It’s probably one of the most interesting projects in mobile at the moment and one that gives us goosebumps every time we see its name come across our feed: Project Ara. A modular smartphone project, Ara sets to create a smartphone that essentially allows consumers to build (and upgrade) their own custom smartphones, similar to what we saw in the PC industry with desktop towers. Just smaller. Much smaller.
With the Project Ara Developer Conference kicking off today (you can watch it live here), the folks at The Verge were able to catch up with Paul Eremenko, the man currently heading the project. The video, uploaded to YouTube earlier a few hours ago, dives into the folks behind Project Ara — Google’s Advanced Technology and Products (ATAP) group — who are on a fast track to creating a smartphone for the everyday-man.
Google’s ATAP team is small and “lean,” composed of engineers who originally worked at DARPA and have set an aggressive time schedule to launch a real, fully functional consumer-ready product early next year. Eremenko says that their self-imposed time pressure yields higher quality innovation with little risk aversion. ATAP’s goal is to create something more than a prototype, and is the reason we’re seeing Project Ara come to fruition in such a short amount of time (2 years). You owe it to yourself to watch the video and learn more about Project Ara.