We’ve been keeping an eye on Project Ara, Google’s modular smartphone effort, ever since it was first announced back in October 2013. The project has steadily been making progress since then, and it was slated to undergo a trial in Puerto Rico in 2015, but now it looks like that’ll no longer be the case.
The official Project Ara Twitter account today revealed that the effort has been pushed back to 2016. The team explains the delay by saying that there are more iterations of the product than it thought. The Project Ara group also says that it’s “looking at a few locations in the US” for its 2016 trial and that a new location is coming soon.
— Project Ara (@ProjectAra) August 17, 2015
Project Ara is Google’s effort to build a modular smartphone that lets you swap out modules on the phone as you see fit. That means that you can swap out the camera module for an added battery, put in some speakers on the front of the device, etc. Not only do these modules make an Ara phone more versatile than a regular handset, but it also allows you to change out a broken module for a new one rather than replacing the entire phone.
Ara sounds like a great concept, but apparently the project has hit a bit of a snag as it nears the start of its soft launch. The good news is that 2016 isn’t too far off. Here’s to hoping that Project Ara’s 2016 trial will happen earlier in the year rather than later.