Evolution of cellular communication devices is introducing new words to our vocabulary as more edgy phones find their way into the market. So if you think that the word ‘Phablet’ is latest in the vogue, you need to update your information. The spark of modular phones like PuzzlePhone, FairPhone 2 and Project ARA is on the verge of unraveling a new technology that will allow your smartphones to walk with time.
If you have not heard about the modular phones, it’s not your fault, this new concept is still nascent and it still has to drink from the cup of success. So cutting short the thrill, we move right into “what is a modular phone?” and how the idea is really revolutionary?
What is a Modular phone?
A modular phone is a smartphone with replaceable and upgradable components.
These components can include anything from SDD/HDD, power supply unit and camera to core elements like RAM and the processor. These are the key components that together make a functional smartphone, but as the modular phone technology will advance, more sensitive components will become changeable and dispensable.
The concept of modular smartphones blurs the line between a phone and a desktop computer, which easily switch any functional damaged or old organ with a new one. When this approach is carried out on a smaller scale, things become a little complex for engineers to make them all fit in smaller space. Of course, there is also the risk of consumers not adapting to the taste, so investments are limited.
Will the modular phones be able to breach the market of smartphones? This discussion is still in debate, but I have sided with the revolutionaries and I think it is the future. Imagine the features of your PC poured right into your smartphone. If you need more pixels in your camera, you don’t have to buy a pricier smartphone but pay the price just for the camera, likewise you would be even able to integrate the features that weren’t there before.
This way, you will be able to buy newly developed components and sell the older ones while keeping your old modular phone. Or exchange components with your friends in a bargain. The process of changing components is fairly easy, while FairPhone 2 employs screwdriver for replacement of components, PuzzlePhone pushes their version of modularity even further by combining the components into packages.
The best thing about the idea is that modular phones will never fall out of the fashion, they will last for decades and unlike the dead end for Nokia N-series mobiles, they will be recyclable. Google’s Ara Project endeavors to make the phones more durable, however, their concept of integrating everything onto a metallic plate is still experimental compared to FairPhone 2, which has already arrived in the market.
When you buy a modular phone, you will be doing a huge favor to the collapsing global economy. It is ironic that there shouldn’t have been a need for modular phones, had the smartphone makers not been so head over heels to stay in the competition. But the turnover rate of a smartphone has become so short that people dispose of their mobiles more regularly than their contact lenses.