Google’s Project Ara; Make your own smartphone

Google’s Project Ara, an idea to let you build your own Smartphone, is at a prototype level yet.

As we all know that there is a war going on among the Mobile Industry giants to lead the smartphone market in the world and with Android OS and Nexus devices Google is also the part of this war with one step ahead especially because of Android OS. And Project Ara is part of it to let you build your own smartphone. Project Ara is not ready yet for the consumer market and is in prototype stages yet. Project Ara is a project to build a phone which would let you pick out and swap every important component yourself. It looks like desktop computer for your pocket.

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Google introduced Project Ara in 2013 and also showed it off at its developer conference in 2014. Now after the two years of its introduction We have got a too early version of a device. An early version of Project Ara looks like something which comes out of a 3D printer rather than something you can in fact use. Rightly because there is much time remaining before you will be able to buy it.

At the moment this prototype is ‘Spiral 2’, and it is a second major milestone in what the company originally envisioned as a two-year process. The major advancements here are planned support for 3G networks, and also the framework for a marketplace where users will be able to find and purchase extra modules. At the second Project Ara Developers Conference it was working with a 720p display module and receiver module attached the front with the space for eight modules on the back, it has a camera, battery, and microUSB adapter.

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Google itself declared this prototype as a early version, it was said in the statement that this very early version of the phone they played was functional, although they were not allowed to turn it on and use it, in part because the touch features aren’t up and running. The company showed it booting up on stage, even though it was not working. The hardware of the phone looks pretty solid as well, of course thanks to its aluminum and steel frame, which looks like a rib-cage when all the modules are popped out. On the other hand the modules of the phone looks light and made of plastic (in look and feel), and makes holding the phone feel a bit odd. If you are used to the smooth corners, the ribbed channels of the Spiral 2 will feel strange.

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The most significant thing in Project Ara is an interchange ability. Each individual piece, is held to the Endo via magnets. Since it is especially important that no module falls off of a device. However here Google is using electro-permanent magnets instead of regular magnets it means they are approaching it with a different technology.

The idea of using Electro-permanent magnet technology gives a chance to Google to switch on or off each magnet’s grip with a short surge of power. As the switch turns on, the magnetic parts turns to another part, but it does not require a constant power surge. When you want the modules they can stay in place and when you don’t want them they can easily be removed. You can switch the modules with no trouble whenever you want.

Project-Ara

Google has explained how the users will actually get them off while the phone is still running. The Google explanation involves a software app that can eject specific modules like USB drives. It also includes a dying battery with a fresh one at the same time as your device is still running. According to Project Ara team it can currently maintain for about 30 seconds. The ultimate goal is to give users up to 2 minutes to make the change.

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The camera module in the photo suggested us a 5 megapixels camera right now but in the future we are expected to see 13 megapixel camera from Toshiba and other modules from other 3rd-party manufacturers.

One thing I must need to mention here is that the “Spiral 2” model is not the final delivery for Project Ara. It means that you don’t have to worried about any less-than-perfect bits in the hardware so far. If this were the final project, you might be concerned for its hardware but as I said it’s not final yet don’t be too concerned. This model come in more than one color and design and it does not mean that it’s a final design or color for the device lineup. In the future we are expecting many more choices in color, design and customization.

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The more challenging part of the Project Ara will be to achieve the supply and demand of each module once it goes live.

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