Project Ara. Full video. Everything you want to know

Lloydbm41

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Oct 17, 2013
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Long video, but right from the beginning you see the phone and how the modules work. Pretty cool.

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=18LU5UtG5-M

there will be three sizes at launch: a mini, which looks to be about the size of an iPhone; medium, which is probably a "standard" Android phone size of 4.7ish inches (that's a guess); and a larger, phablet-esque size that is approximately one-third larger than the medium endo. The best part about the three is that all modules will be completely interchangeable between them, so you could theoretically have all three endos and switch your phone size from day-to-day.

Google's goal is to keep Ara – which is noted to be called Google Ara in the video – as affordable as possible. The endoskeletons (which are the base of the entire phone) should run about $15 a piece since they don't do much outside of allowing all the other components to talk to one another; modules, of course, will vary in pricing but are still said to be "affordable."

April 15-16 will be a Project Ara Developers Conference (at the Google-plex and via Online). Will have Project Ara phones in developer hands later this year and in concumer hands by Jan 2015.
 

vomhorizon

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Sep 24, 2013
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Sounds promising, but i am not sure this will really succeed..Kudos to google for trying though!
 

ChrisTX

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Dec 30, 2009
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This looks like too much work for the average consumer. Many people just want their device to work out of the box without having to build it themselves.
 

tbayrgs

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Jul 5, 2009
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This looks like too much work for the average consumer. Many people just want their device to work out of the box without having to build it themselves.
My guess is it wouldn't be too much different from something like Motomaker. You could order/purchase a default configuration or custom build it and it'll arrive completely assembled. The real benefit would be in being able to purchase upgrades later in the products life--i.e. a better display component, more storage, upgraded wifi module, etc.
 

Lloydbm41

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This looks like too much work for the average consumer. Many people just want their device to work out of the box without having to build it themselves.
?? Sliding a new module in to upgrade the camera or display or whatever is to much work? Everything is magnetic and easy. Is it to difficult to plugin or unplug your MacBook Pro? Not sure how much simpler things can be made?
 

Dontazemebro

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Jul 23, 2010
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I dunno, somewhere in West Texas
Mark Cuban is hilarious ... but oh yea this is cool too. It's still going to be a little restrictive since smaller endo-skeletons can only hold so many modules. Maybe they should have made the endo-skeletons re-configurable.

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This looks like too much work for the average consumer. Many people just want their device to work out of the box without having to build it themselves.
I think even my 4 yr old could make this work. Unless someone is just an illiterate and has the comprehension skills of a mule, I don't see how this could be any more simplified.
 

LIVEFRMNYC

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Oct 27, 2009
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?? Sliding a new module in to upgrade the camera or display or whatever is to much work? Everything is magnetic and easy. Is it to difficult to plugin or unplug your MacBook Pro? Not sure how much simpler things can be made?
Exactly, and we all know consumers love customizing products to their own liking. It's just been the choice of accessories, design(on some products), and with the OS. This would be a first for hardware, and consumers will flock to it as long as it's able to compete with popular devices.
 

ChrisTX

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Dec 30, 2009
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?? Sliding a new module in to upgrade the camera or display or whatever is to much work? Everything is magnetic and easy. Is it to difficult to plugin or unplug your MacBook Pro? Not sure how much simpler things can be made?
Dontazemebro said:
I think even my 4 yr old could make this work. Unless someone is just an illiterate and has the comprehension skills of a mule, I don't see how this could be any more simplified.
I just don't see this idea taking off. In theory it sounds great, but in practice it seems like more hassle than it's worth. When you watch the original Phonebloks video you see no size restrictions with the chassis itself. With this Project Ara device, the blocks sizes are limited because the chassis is partitioned in places. I guess we'll have to see when this device is finalized.
 

Stuntman06

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Sep 19, 2011
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I have money burning a hole in my pocket for whoever makes a physical, landscape slider keyboard module. I'm thinking it would have to be attached to the front part of the phone. The module will be a keyboard on the front with a mechanism that slides the screen over to reveal the physical keyboard. I'm hoping someone makes this with an HD screen. The back will have all of the regular high end modules that would make it a high end phone.
 

sentinelsx

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Feb 28, 2011
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SOunds too good to be true in 2014. May be better in the next 10 or 20 years, but the manufacturing technology isn't there yet. No i am not saying that you cannot make modules or replace them, you can, but at the expense of big bloated devices.

I doubt a project Ara phone as thin and "compact" as my Galaxy S4 will be made this year or in 2015 when they expect it to come out. Unless google has something secret worked out that we do not know, i am not interested in sliding a memory or camera module in my 1 inch think phone.

Plus it is not so efficient and creates more material use, again according to current technology. The more integrated the different sub-systems are, the easiest it is to increase performance gains, reduce size, and reduce material use.

May be something like future advances in nanotech or materials tech will help this out, or as i said earlier, may be google has something up its sleeve it is not showing yet.
 

ItHurtsWhenIP

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Aug 20, 2013
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'Merica!
Can't wait to see where this modular concept goes. I like what I heard in the video, but there's always more to it than can be said in a 30-minute show-and-tell interview.

Unless google has something secret worked out that we do not know, i am not interested in sliding a memory or camera module in my 1 inch think phone.
Did you even watch the video? Where do you see a 1-inch thick phone?

Please, do tell.
 
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7thson

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May 13, 2012
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Six Rivers, CA
Wow… I'm really intrigued! I was a little skeptical of the magnets holding components in place but it sounds plausible. I have two questions. How reliable will the circuitry be when it's not hardwired to the chassis/circuit board? It sounds inefficient for conducting electricity to have all those contacts that can get dirty, corrode and loosen. Will those magnets be strong enough to keep the components from flying out if/when the phone gets dropped on concrete? It's bad enough the screen breaks, but "Oh crap! My processor just went down the sewer drain!". All in all, despite my reservations,I think this could be huge. Too bad the demo didn't boot.
 

sentinelsx

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Feb 28, 2011
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Can't wait to see where this modular concept goes. I like what I heard in the video, but there's always more to it than can be said in a 30-minute show-and-tell interview.



Did you even watch the video? Where do you see a 1-inch thick phone?

Please, do tell.
I have seen many futurist videos from many companies to know they are all promises waiting for better tech to happen first.
 

Shuri

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Nov 23, 2011
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My guess is it wouldn't be too much different from something like Motomaker. You could order/purchase a default configuration or custom build it and it'll arrive completely assembled. The real benefit would be in being able to purchase upgrades later in the products life--i.e. a better display component, more storage, upgraded wifi module, etc.
And that's where I see the problems coming: So you want a better display component? That's great, but for the higher resolution you'll need a better SOC.. Oh your new SOC and Display drains more battery? You'll need a bigger one.

The big improvement in this thing would be repairability though.
 

MRU

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Anyone else in the scout beta / project phase or is it just me here ?

Hi .....

Thanks for being a part of Project Ara!

Today we’re kicking off Mission 5: Create with a Friend. Head to your dscout app and jump in!

Overview
Bringing a modular smartphone to life involves making informed choices (size / modules / style / price / etc.), and we want to be sure we help people along the way. For the scouts who did Mission 3, we have an idea of how you would like to customize an Ara phone. We now want to see how your friends (preferably who don’t yet have smartphones) would want to do it. This will help us as we design the Ara phone configuration experience.

So have fun, be creative, and pretend that you’re the perfect Ara configurator for your friend! And bonus points if you help the friends you customize with become Ara Scouts (https://dscout.com/ara).

As usual, in awe of your participation,

// daniel
 

sviato

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Oct 27, 2010
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Another? Where was there first, and how do you know this will be a miss? :confused:
Lol the first? There are dozens. It's a good and bad thing about Google.

edit: Watched the video, seems like a pretty cool concept. However, optimizing software for the differnet hardware combo possibilities may be difficult. Will have to see how the phones perform early on.
 
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