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Motorla Ara


Pouria

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What do you guys think will happen with the new concept of modular phones? Phonebloks had the same idea and it seems Motorola and Google have partnered up for the project Ara in order to make this reality. I think with Google backing this idea up, it will actually come true just like Google Glass. Imagine being able to spend as little as $400 or as much as $800 to make a phone that suits you and your budget. I really hope it does break ground and becomes popular.

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Well rather than "partner up" Google just bought Motorola instead. kinda makes it easier to make sure you get them doing what you want if your Google. It was Apple doing the innovation a few years ago. What have they done recently? Just newer versions of whats already out there. Its Google pushing the new ideas now and they arent afraid to swing and miss sometimes. Will modular phones work? No clue but I like the idea.

There was an article in a business magazine last month, cant remember which, about how Google isnt so much interested in Motorola making money on phones as they are in keeping Apple from making money on phones. 75% of Apples profits are in phone sales so cutting that back would help Google enormously when competing in other areas.

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I would be the first one to buy a device like that, since I would be able to customize it however I want. Imagine having a Nokia camera on it with the processor from intel and screen from samsung while using a battery from Motorola. You could possibly customize it to have the best quality components.

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Can't wait until this comes out. Great concept. Hope this crushes Apple.

This could definitely crush Apple in the mobile market. Just look at the shares of Windows vs. Mac. It would work flawlessly with the open source Android and it would give consumers a much broader option. It could even help companies like Nokia and even Blackberry to stay competitive in the mobile market.

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  • 3 months later...

Google’s first Project Ara smartphones to be released in Q1 2015, base model to cost $50

projectara.jpg



Time magazine has a great long-form read on Google’s modular smartphone initiative, Project Ara, which includes some basic release information. While the company is still toiling away at a working prototype ahead of its Ara developer conference in April, Google hopes to have handsets ready for commercial release by Q1 2015. The base model Ara smartphone will retail for $50 but contain only the most core components – which means no cellular connectivity in favour of a Wi-Fi radio.

The article is well worth a complete read to gain some insight into Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) group, the former Motorola division not sold to Lenovo founded by ex-DARPA employees. For the tl;dr crowd, we’ve included salient Ara information from the article after the jump.

  • Project Ara supports three phone sizes: mini (for the $50 model), medium (for more mainstream smartphone users), and jumbo (think phablet). The size of each is determined by its endoskeleton, the one Ara component to be Google branded.
  • Each endoskeleton is composed of aluminum and contains some networking circuitry and a back-up battery. Every other component of the phone will be modular.
  • Modular components are slid into place and are currently connected via retractable pins to the endoskeleton. The commercial release will feature capacitive connections that free up more space.
  • Module can be “hot-swapped”, meaning you won’t need to power down the phone to add a camera for a impromptu selfie.
    To ensure that the smartphone doesn’t fall apart when it’s in your pocket, modules are secured via latches (device front) or electropermanent magnets (device back). An app is used to lock everything to the endoskeleton.
  • ATAP claims Ara devices will be as water resistant as current smartphones.
  • Current Ara prototypes are 9.7mm thick, which is a little bit more than an iPhone 4s. Each module component is 4mm thick.
  • Google is hoping use 3D printers to make Ara devices as aesthetically customizable as they are functionally.

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Can't wait until this comes out. Great concept. Hope this crushes Apple.

why would you hope this crushes Apple? why would you care? this isn't 2008. Apple doesn't have a monopoly anymore, especially since Samsung has started pumping out 15 phones a year, along with its 15 billion dollar ad campaigns. and if you aren't concerned with corporate affinity, there are other options available too. Why do you care about Apple? these companies are all the same, they just play different angles at times

As a long-time Apple user, I have to wonder that. and I also have to wonder why you would think this COULD crush Apple? Apple's primary selling point is sleek simplicity, and this is the exact opposite of that. the markets don't really overlap all that much.

anyway, i was (and still am) totally behind the idea of phonebloks in theory, but after watching those videos i have to cringe. first of all, those designs in the videos are HIDEOUS. second of all, who are they kidding? the idea that "this phone will always be what you want it to be!" implies that Google/Motorla won't be pumping these things out every year like Apple/Samsung do. yes, the phone will be what you want it to be--at a cost.

phone styles and trends shift constantly. for example: by 2017, Samsung's phones will be the size of a tv. it is not really a viable, competitive business model unless these types of products are constantly growing. you won't compete by just having one phone on the market and hoping people don't get bored of it. the phone 'body' or dock or whatever will be constantly shifting, as too will the technology that you put into it. this, to me, makes the phone seem fundamentally no different than buying a new Galaxy or iPhone every two years. the only difference is that you can upgrade it piece by piece, instead of getting a whole new product all at once. the technology will be changing at the same rate, and so... who cares?

i'll still with my iPhone, thanks

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why would you hope this crushes Apple? why would you care? this isn't 2008. Apple doesn't have a monopoly anymore, especially since Samsung has started pumping out 15 phones a year, along with its 15 billion dollar ad campaigns. and if you aren't concerned with corporate affinity, there are other options available too. Why do you care about Apple? these companies are all the same, they just play different angles at times

As a long-time Apple user, I have to wonder that. and I also have to wonder why you would think this COULD crush Apple? Apple's primary selling point is sleek simplicity, and this is the exact opposite of that. the markets don't really overlap all that much.

anyway, i was (and still am) totally behind the idea of phonebloks in theory, but after watching those videos i have to cringe. first of all, those designs in the videos are HIDEOUS. second of all, who are they kidding? the idea that "this phone will always be what you want it to be!" implies that Google/Motorla won't be pumping these things out every year like Apple/Samsung do. yes, the phone will be what you want it to be--at a cost.

phone styles and trends shift constantly. for example: by 2017, Samsung's phones will be the size of a tv. it is not really a viable, competitive business model unless these types of products are constantly growing. you won't compete by just having one phone on the market and hoping people don't get bored of it. the phone 'body' or dock or whatever will be constantly shifting, as too will the technology that you put into it. this, to me, makes the phone seem fundamentally no different than buying a new Galaxy or iPhone every two years. the only difference is that you can upgrade it piece by piece, instead of getting a whole new product all at once. the technology will be changing at the same rate, and so... who cares?

i'll still with my iPhone, thanks

they (google) might not need to produce multiple different versions to keep money coming in .. Think licensing the ability to sell components to be used for the phone every time a new upgraded CPU, camera, screen, gpu, RAM, etc comes out they would get a slice of the pie and this could be huge I and many people keep our currently old tech phones because the cost is to high to replace the entire phone esp if all I need is a better CPU or more RAM to keep it current.

I could see them release update versions of the skeleton as in lighter materials or making it thinner etc but other then that what else is onboard that will be outdated in 6 months if all it has is some onboard networking and a back up battery. They will make there money from licensing.

Also the fact that it does not only target phone users you could buy the 50$ version and give it to your kids to play games on and every couple years upgrade a couple parts to keep it relevant with the latest games instead of pay hundreds for a Nintendo or Sony hand held that will be irrelevant in a couple years.

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it's just a water down version of what Phone Bloks could have be tho..

Instead of being able to customize your phone like phone bloks, Ara is just a phone that let you upgrade your parts, but you will not be able to customize your phone.

Ara is more like the old IBM computer than PC....

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I feel like most of the general smartphone buying public is too lazy/unknowledgable to buy something like this. Most people just buy prepackaged products and don't customize them, and this phone will mostly appeal to nerds/techies.

Having said that, something doesn't need to have mass appeal to be successful. Sometimes you need a unique product and a passionate/knowledgable niche market. Perhaps this could be something like the custom car industry. Sure 95% of people may not customize their cars, but the 5% that do buy a lot of parts, enough to support a massive industry.

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they (google) might not need to produce multiple different versions to keep money coming in .. Think licensing the ability to sell components to be used for the phone every time a new upgraded CPU, camera, screen, gpu, RAM, etc comes out they would get a slice of the pie and this could be huge I and many people keep our currently old tech phones because the cost is to high to replace the entire phone esp if all I need is a better CPU or more RAM to keep it current.

I could see them release update versions of the skeleton as in lighter materials or making it thinner etc but other then that what else is onboard that will be outdated in 6 months if all it has is some onboard networking and a back up battery. They will make there money from licensing.

Also the fact that it does not only target phone users you could buy the 50$ version and give it to your kids to play games on and every couple years upgrade a couple parts to keep it relevant with the latest games instead of pay hundreds for a Nintendo or Sony hand held that will be irrelevant in a couple years.

what! we have absolutely no idea what is included in the $50 model. all we know is that it's modular and won't even have cellular connectivity at that point (nice phone...). is it really that difficult to spend $150-240 on a Nintendo handheld every four years? you're right, this is an alternative, but i really don't see the selling point, especially when the $50 model will be smaller and have less block storage capability compared to the "standard" model or the jumbo version, which is probably the size of my iPad/any given Samsung phone. i think the selling point for a nintendo handheld is to play nintendo games, too. but i get your point.

we have no idea how much individual pieces will cost, so while it may be somewhat cheaper in the long run, i just don't see many people viewing their phones as projects and kits to work on. if the average Apple update was simply about RAM and processor, then maybe. if Samsung wasn't progressively getting larger and larger and larger, then maybe. But to build a phone comparable to those products, and keep them comparable, I imagine you'll have to spend a fair bit of money, too, while keeping up to date on the specs and differences between them. the market just seems so marginal.

what Apple, Samsung, etc. NEED to do is make their phones recyclable, so we don't have a billion devices being tossed out every year, presumably to sit in a landfill for the next five centuries. that would be technology i could get behind

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what! we have absolutely no idea what is included in the $50 model. all we know is that it's modular and won't even have cellular connectivity at that point (nice phone...). is it really that difficult to spend $150-240 on a Nintendo handheld every four years? you're right, this is an alternative, but i really don't see the selling point, especially when the $50 model will be smaller and have less block storage capability compared to the "standard" model or the jumbo version, which is probably the size of my iPad/any given Samsung phone. i think the selling point for a nintendo handheld is to play nintendo games, too. but i get your point.

we have no idea how much individual pieces will cost, so while it may be somewhat cheaper in the long run, i just don't see many people viewing their phones as projects and kits to work on. if the average Apple update was simply about RAM and processor, then maybe. if Samsung wasn't progressively getting larger and larger and larger, then maybe. But to build a phone comparable to those products, and keep them comparable, I imagine you'll have to spend a fair bit of money, too, while keeping up to date on the specs and differences between them. the market just seems so marginal.

what Apple, Samsung, etc. NEED to do is make their phones recyclable, so we don't have a billion devices being tossed out every year, presumably to sit in a landfill for the next five centuries. that would be technology i could get behind

I do agree and there will always be a market for the turn key ready phone like iPhone since a lot of people can't be bothered doing research to find the latest upgrades I see this as a niche market but could be popular with a vast user base from people want just what they require up to the serious modder.

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I do agree and there will always be a market for the turn key ready phone like iPhone since a lot of people can't be bothered doing research to find the latest upgrades I see this as a niche market but could be popular with a vast user base from people want just what they require up to the serious modder.

yeah i cant disagree with that

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