Smartphones may have reached a stasis for the moment. Both the Apple app store and Google Play seem like well-curated markets for applications. Screen dimensions and resolutions, battery life, and new touchscreen technology all seem to be at there most upgradeable. So if there’s anything really new to add to the smartphone world, it would have to be something to do with the one feature about smartphones that keeps changing: the physical appearance.
Ara, a new project unveiled by Motorola Mobility, aims to make smartphones modular and constantly customizable. Using new open source technologies, Ara enables you to mix and match your smartphone hardware. Create your own design on the back of the smartphone by fitting together pieces of hardware like you were assembling a puzzle or pieces of Lego.
One of the coolest features of Ara is the possibility of reducing electronic waste. When you upgrade your phone, you don’t need to discard the whole thing, just remove your camera module and replace it with another.