Project Ara Opens to Developers, MDK also Released

April 10, 2014 - Written By Alexander Maxham

Project Ara is one of those moonshots from Google that we’ve been interested in for quite a long time. It’s basically the idea of having a modular phone. Where you can choose your own parts, and replace them as needed. Almost like you would with a desktop. So if you want a new camera sensor, just place the camera, etc. It’s a pretty cool idea, and we thought it’d be a few years before it came into fruition. But when Project Ara’s YouTube video got “leaked” and it blew up, Motorola contacted them and basically said they wanted to work with them on this. Then as we know Motorola got sold off to Lenovo, but Google kept this part of Motorola in Mountain view, Google ATAP.

Now Google ATAP has opened up Project Ara to developers, so we should really start seeing some cool stuff coming out of Project Ara now. The Project Ara MDK shows the device’s nickname of “endo” and that the endoskeleton is a 4×7 parceled grid. There is also a 3×6 and a 2×5 parceled grid that Project Ara has available. Unfortunately, due to a few limitations, the largest that a component can be is 2×2. Which shouldn’t be too much of an issue. What’s also interesting here is that Ara users will be able to use more than one battery. So users will be able to swap batteries without actually removing them or turning off the phone. Which is pretty awesome, in my opinion.

Project Ara has a long way to go, but this is just the beginning. We should see lots of manufacturers working on parts for Project Ara pretty soon. Hopefully it’s not as slow as Glass was/is. We may see partners like Samsung, Qualcomm, NVIDIA and others jump on-board with this device. I’m hoping LG jumps on board as well.