A month ago I saw a video on Youtube about creating modular smartphones, created by Phonebloks. Phoneblok puts forth their idea that such a product could reduce waste, and allow highly customizable products for smartphone users who utilize their phone for different purposes. In essence, this platform moves beyond a modifiable user interface that focuses on apps, and focuses on a system with modifiable hardware to supplement those apps.
While the premise was interesting, I did not give it much thought due to the fact I could not envision any smartphone developer investing into such a product. Needless to say, I was wrong since Motorola hasannounced it will be creating modular smartphones with its Project Ara. Motorola’s idea is to create an endoskeleton that will provide the key components of a phone with modules that may be attached.
Such a modifiable phone would allow users to create a phone that will be tailored to their primary user preferences. For instance, someone who may like to take pictures with their phone could invest into a better camera module and more storage to keep the pictures.