Word from Google is that modularity is what’s next for mobile phones – its Project Ara smartphones aim to allow users to customize phones, including choosing their own preferred screen, compact camera module, or special components.
While the project has attracted a great deal of skepticism, the Technology Review recently published an article entitled, “Why Google’s Modular Smartphone Might Actually Succeed.” Google recently held its first developer conference for the Project Ara phone (April 15-16) and it attracted over three thousand attendees. Opening up hardware and software development to outside companies, Google hopes to succeed where others have failed by providing a vast array of choices, both for physical components and apps, when the first Ara phone is released in January of 2015.
While this puzzle-like phone will hopefully reduce e-waste and allow for individual customization, it could also be a boon for our business, because research has shown that a quality camera is at the top of the list of mobile phone features that people value and use daily. Since we provide camera module assembly systems using highly accurate active alignment in up to six degrees of freedom, our customers can provide top quality compact cameras as a modular smartphone component.