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Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Motorola Unveils Project Ara
Motorola has announced a new initiative to help smartphone users take handset customization beyond ringtones and wallpaper to its very form and function.
Led by Motorola's Advanced Technology and Projects group,
Project Ara is developing a free, open hardware platform for
creating highly modular smartphones. Motorola wants to do for
hardware what the Android platform has done for software:
create a third-party developer ecosystem, lower the barriers to
entry and compress development timelines.
"Our goal is to drive a more thoughtful, expressive, and open
relationship between users, developers, and their phones,"
Motorola wrote in a company blog post. "To give you the power
to decide what your phone does, how it looks, where and what
it's made of, how much it costs, and how long you'll keep it."
The design for Project Ara consists of what Motorola calls an
endoskeleton (endo) and modules. The endo is the structural
frame that holds all the modules in place. A module can be
anything, from a new application processor to a new display or
keyboard, an extra battery or a pulse oximeter.
Motorola has been working on Project Ara for over a year.
Recently, Dave Hakkens, the creator of Phonebloks partnered
with Motorola, to develop a phone platform that is modular,
open, customizable, and made for the entire world.
In a few months, Motorola will send an invitation to developers
to start creating modules for the Ara platform and anticipates
an alpha release of the Module Developer's Kit (MDK) sometime