Spiral 3 Project Ara Modular Phones
The Spiral 3 is next Project Ara prototype. It is in the works and expected to be complete before June. It will offer LTE connectivity, and better battery life. Google says that modular phone will be able to wirelessly transfer data between the modules and endoskeleton.
The Spiral 3 will have a redesign of the magnets that keep the modules in place. Paul Eremenko, Project Ara’s leader, said the electro-permanent magnets that hold modules in place have been moved onto the endoskeleton itself.
Eremenko said the group hopes to get the phone to last for a full day, at least. He also said that this might only happen by swapping in another battery at some point. He also said, we can expect the Spiral 3 to “match or exceed the functionality of a state-of-the-art smartphone today” with 20 to 30 third-party modules available for developers to tinker around with.
Google plans to start selling the Spiral 2 project Ara modular phones to customers in Puerto Rico sometime after Q2. According to Jessica Beavers, a Google marketing executive, Google will partner with Mexico-based carrier Claro and local carrier Open Mobile to offer the product. The phones will be sold from trucks that function as mobile stores, as well as over the Internet.
Google says that this modular approach will lead to inexpensive smartphones that can be customized and upgraded by users depending on their budget or personal requirements. Google recently showed a preview of the online Ara Marketplace that will let developers sell Google-approved modules to consumers. The company plans to have a minimum of 20 modules available when it starts selling phones in Puerto Rico. The modules would range from a screen to a camera to speakers to even a pedometer, depending on people’s needs.
The Spiral 3 will have great features such as 4G LTE, a camera that people actually want to take pictures with, and longer battery life.
Meanwhile, the Project Ara Configurator app was announced as well. The app will allow users to choose the modules on the Project Ara smartphone and see how it will look before they buy it. The Project Ara Configurator app is expected to be released before the Spiral 3 prototype is launched.