First announced in late 2013, Project Ara was originally a Motorola thing, but ultimately landed with Google after Moto ran off with Chinese manufacturer Lenovo. Oh, the soap opera that is mobile.
The project finally appears to be gathering pace, and indeed Google has just fired out the first official Project Ara Module Developers Kit (MDK) - essentially a big PDF for interested parties.
Project Ara, for those who haven’t heard of it, aims to provide fully customisable phones, so you’ll be able to choose your own processor, your own camera, your own battery… with each component slotting into the rear of the phone.
The Project Ara MDK essentially covers guidelines for those who wish to create components for the modular handsets.
In Google’s words: “The Module Developers Kit (MDK) defines the Ara platform for module developers and provides reference implementations for various design features.”
And getting slightly more technical: “The Ara platform consists of an on-device packet-switched data network based on the MIPI UniPro protocol stack, a flexible power bus, and an elegant industrial design that mechanically unites the modules with an endoskeleton.”
We’re seeing endoskeletons in Small (2x5), Medium (3x6) and Large (4x7), while the front designs welcome a choice of touch-only, QWERTY keyboard, or even an old-school number pad on the smallest option.
Google plans to follow up with MDKs throughout 2014, and of course the first Project Ara conference gets underway next week.
via: Project Ara MDK