Google has gone into more detail about its Project Ara modular mobile system, using a specific developers conference for the hardware format to update us on its plans for self-assembling our dream phones out of various components.
The two key dates as far as Google are concerned are this December — when an Android update will prepare the OS for the phones — and January 2015, when the first modular mobiles are set to go on sale.
Much like Motorola’s Moto Maker customiser, Project Ara will be built around an Ara Configurator tool, one that lets users add custom images and colours to the phones while they’re selecting components, plus 3D-printed textures will be available too, so we’ll be able to add bumpy bits to cases.
Google’s Paul Eremenko, the head of Project Ara, claims the modular construction system means people may end up sticking with the same phone for “five or six years” as they pop in a new camera or processor unit when they feel like it instead of upgrading the whole thing. Hopefully that’s not foreshadowing Google charging us three times as much as a normal phone for the base.