The most talked about modular smartphone Ara, has been in development at Google’s Advanced Technology and Project (ATAP), the device is set to undergo three major development stages and is now in its final development stage (spiral 3), and is getting ready for its first set of users who will have access to it at the market pilot set for Puerto Rico later this year.
At I/O 2015 Google showed off their Project Ara device booting up and running the latest version of Android Lollipop. Unlike last year where the device crashed, Ara seems quite stable. After booting the device, a camera module which was not connected to the device upon booting was then attached and used to take a photo. Google’s ATAP team also showed off a variety of technologies which they were working on, but not much more was said about Ara.
Seeing Ara boot and running the latest version of android was certainly a big relief. For those who had doubts that the Project Ara device wasn’t making progress, this demonstration should be enough to set things straight.
The Ara device which was shown off today seems quite similar to the one that was shown off at devcon2. The device that we saw at devcon2 was a spiral2 prototype, and Google did say that they were working on spiral3. One big change which is expected in spiral3 is the addition of inductive data connections. With inductive data connection, there won’t be any metal contacts between modules and the Endoskeleton. Considering that the only part of the device that Google is developing is the Endoskeleton, we couldn’t say for sure whether or not they booted a spiral 3 prototype today, or if it was a more stable version of the spiral2 prototype, but the image of the contacts on the Endoskeleton looks very similar to that of the Spiral2 prototype, so we have to assume the latter.
Now we wait for an official date for the Pilot launch in Puerto Rico, as well as the state of the device, and modules that will be available. All this news is expected to be available when the next Ara developer’s conference (devcon3) is held.
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