This article is part of Phonebloks, a One Army project tackling the e-waste problem. You can learn morehere
OK let’s start of with the main question we get: Is the modular phone FUCKING ready, it takes forever!!?? “Is the modular phone for sale? it’s been over 5 years since your video!”
Well..no. And actually it’s been 2,5 years ago since we showed Phonebloks. We know, quite a long time ago. However it was an idea, something that would maybe help us get through the 21 century technology-age without making so much e-waste with our gadgets. Some of you realised it was just an idea, some suspected it would be ready within a year while others thought we run a kickstarter and they wanted to buy it. For us it was a vision, something that would hopefully be our future. Either way you guys liked it, so the industry got interested and started to work on it. Great, step 1 succeeded! ✓
Google, Xiaomi, ZTE, the big boys of the industry showed interest but it also made sense for startups like Puzzlephone and Fairphone. Google made the biggest promise with project Ara, a modular phone for the entire world, made for $50 in materials and ready for a big market test in 2015. Ambitious.
guess what, 2015 no phone
Yep it got delayed. Maybe we were naive thinking they could pull it off so quickly because they have the biggest resources and manpower available, maybe just hopeful. Either way it’s been delayed and we are ok with that.
Wait for it..
Over the years there has been a lot of talking about the modular phone. We, you, the industry. Talking about it helps, it can inspires others and set out a course. But in order for a real change, it needs to be made. Sometimes it takes a while before the impact of an idea is visible. Time goes by before an idea is fully incubated and word put into action. Specially when its about developing a completely new phone from scratch.
Modular phones are coming
Puzzlephone is crowdfunded and shipped in September. Seeed made a kit to make a DIY modular phone. Fairphone made their phone more modular. And last week(!) LG released their modular phone out of the blue. Watch their trippy video above.
We know, these phones are not compatible with each other and not as modular as Phonebloks, yet. It takes a while to shift an industry. But we are thrilled to see the industry is slowly turning towards a more modular future!
Also: We’ve had a good chat with Google about ARA. Now.. they don’t want to give any release dates anymore. (Something about a lot of miscalculations in the past) But the project is still full steam under development! 2016?