It's been a short while since we've heard anything new with Google's Project Ara smartphone, the modular smartphone being developed and tested by their ATAP division which they acquired from Motorola as part of the Motorola acquisition, and kept after selling Motorola to Lenovo.While Google is making steady progress with the Project Ara smartphone advancement, it appears that they will be taking on some new partners to help with things in the marketplace area. Today Google has announced that they will be partnering with technology services provider Globant to serve as the hub for any hardware and modules for the Project Ara smartphones upon release.
There's no doubt Google was going to have a need for some place they could sell the pieces that make up Project Ara devices, which includes the modules, and of course the other hardware like the screen, and even the base of the phone. There has been talk amongst community enthusiasts that Google could possibly sell the module pieces as well as the hardware base of the phone through the Play Store in the "Devices" section, which isn't too hard to believe since they already sell plenty of devices there, but it appears Globant will take over the role of the main place to go for buying these items.
The store that Globant sets up for Project Ara buyers will not only give them a place to make their purchases on hardware and related products, but much like Google offers with the Play Store the goal is to have it set up to allow for reviews by consumers as well as a recommendation system that lets people know what real consumers think of what they've just bought. Globant has been working with Google since 2006, as their CEO and Co-Founder states that "This represents a new milestone in Globant's on-going partnership with Google and we are very excited to be part of such an innovative project." In addition to this news, the Project Ara team has announced that they will be showing off their go-to-market pilot plans at the upcoming Developers Conference in January of 2015, which is just around the corner. The idea of the store is to have it work much like the Play Store, where consumers have direct access to the products as well as the module and hardware developers themselves, similar to relationship between the app and game developers and users within the Play Store. This should make things much smoother. What do you think of Google's ideas for the Project Ara module/hardware marketplace?