As Motorola runs off with Lenovo, the divorce settlement says Google gets to keep the Advanced Technologies and Projects (ATAP) group, and we heard just last week about their dream of 3D environment mapping for smartphones (Project Tango).
Their other big plan is Project Ara, which hopes to introduce modular smartphones comprised of the components of your choice. We’ll officially hear more at the Ara Developers’ Conference in April.
The first-ever Ara Developers’ Conference is set for April 15-16, with a live webstream and “limited number of participants” – developers, naturally – able to attend.
This will actually be the first of three Ara Developers’ Conferences throughout 2014. In April we’ll focus on the alpha release of the Ara Module Developers’ Kit (MDK).
Over on the official Project Ara site, the ATAP writes: “The smartphone is one of the most empowering and intimate objects in our lives. Yet most of us have little say in how the device is made, what it does, and how it looks. What if you could make thoughtful choices about exactly what your phone does, and use it as a creative canvas to tell your own story?”
In theory, you could save a few quid by omitting components like Bluetooth and NFC (Near Field Communication), instead funnelling bucks into, say, a 41MP rear camera. Or maybe 8MP would do; the choice is yours.
Interesting stuff, no doubt, but it remains to be seen if modular phones are genuinely a viable prospect. More info in mid-April.