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Google to launch modular marketplace for Project Ara smartphone

Google is going to create a dedicated marketplace for Project Ara components.

Project Ara is Google’s modular smartphone brainchild that will allow users to swap out different parts, or ‘modules’, of their phone.

Google will supply a barebones chassis, and then users buy various modules, for instance a screen, camera, or processor, and voila – a bona fide Lego blower.

The marketplace will provide a platform for OEMs to flog their own compatible modules, making it easy for users to find the right bit of kit.

Google also wants to include reviews and recommendations for the modules, so you can separate the tech from the tat.

Paul Eremenko, Google’s Project Ara head, revealed the news during at interview at Purdue University earlier this month.

By following the Android model, we are creating a free and open platform,” explained Eremenko.

“The Ara MDK is free and open and available to everybody, so everybody could create a module per the specifications of the developer’s kit and put it in the Ara module marketplace, which is analogous to the Google Play store, and sell directly to consumers.”

Project Ara is currently available for developers to tinker with, and has a consumer release date set for some time in Q1 2015, retailing at $50 (£31).

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