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Developers can now get hold of Project Ara ahead of next year's release

By Kevin Thomas on 17th July 2014

Project Ara


Google showcased a non-working prototype of its Project Ara smartphone earlier this year and we were more than a little impressed by the potential of the device, which allows users to swap out modules and replace individual components to create the smartphone of their dreams.


So for example you could pick exactly what camera, processor and battery size you wanted, as well as what if any extras you want, so maybe a fingerprint scanner for example. Then a year or two down the line when your phone is feeling a bit dated you’d be able to upgrade individual components rather than buying a whole new handset.


So far it’s just been Google working on it, but that’s all about changed as the search giant has opened up applications to developers who want to build modules of their own. Anyone can apply, though applications will be prioritised based on the strength of your module concept and your technical expertise, so it’s probably best to leave it to the professionals.


Those people and companies that suitably impress Google will be given a Project Ara developers board and be able to get to work on making their own modules, ready for when the first Project Ara phone is launched early next year. There’s an extra incentive for developers too, as the best module will win the Project Ara Developer Prize Challenge and its creators will receive $100,000.


Any interested developers should get in quick, as the first round of applications ends tomorrow, the 17th of July, however a second round will then run until the 17th of August.


If you’re not so much interested in developing for Project Ara as just getting your hands on it then you’ll have to wait a bit longer, but not too much, as the first handset is expected to go on sale in January, with a starting cost of just $50 (£30), by which point hopefully developers will have cooked up all sorts of exciting modules.


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