Project Ara, Google’s take on the modular smartphone, is still set to launch early next year, and now the company revealed how it plans to sell the new device, in addition to the modules that go with it. Google is apparently planning to push Project Ara through an online market that’s similar to, but separate from, the Play Store.
The news comes from Paul Eremenko, who heads up Google’s Advanced Technologies and Products (ATAP). It’s a small group focused on some of the company’s most ambitious projects, including Project Ara. During a recent Q&A at Purdue University, he kicked things off by revealing that, as a kid, he always wanted to “build a starship” before diving into exactly what ATAP is working on.
Project Ara’s goal is to change smartphone hardware design the way Android changed mobile software: open it up to the public. The upcoming online store will take submissions from anyone who wants to build their own modules and sell them. “Anybody can create a module per the specifications of the developer’s kit and put it in the Ara module marketplace, which is analogous to the Google Play Store, and sell directly to consumers,” Eremenko said.
There’s still a lot we don’t know about Project Ara, but hopefully we’ll get an official look at Google’s modular phone soon. The project is slated to go live in 2015 and we can’t wait to try it out first hand. For now, you can check out the full interview below and start dreaming up the ultimate smartphone you’ll build once Project Ara goes live.