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Google says its Project Ara modular smartphone will be ready to buy in 2017

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Jim Evans
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The company said it will be releasing the developer edition in Q4 2016, and it s already working on a consumer version that s scheduled to be released next year.

Ara has made so much progress this year, it s actually spun out into a new business unit run by Richard Woolridge the chief operating officer of ATAP , Google said.

Enabled devices will have six generic slots that can be customized to your heart s desire.The idea of Ara is to ensure that your devices are future-proofed, meaning that the whole upgrade every two years mentality is no longer a thing.

When you want to eject it, you can either specify the module you no longer want within the settings app or simply tell Google using your voice.Google is working on giving developers more access to tools that it calls the first truly modular computing platform.

Created by former DARPA director Regina Dugan, who has since departed for Facebook, ATAP specializes in projects that could be developed within two years, which is a much shorter time from Google s other innovative program, X, which focuses on moonshots.

In previous years, the company has shared details around some of the things it s been working on, including its wearable technology effort Project Jacquard, touch-sensitive textiles Project Soli, and Project Vault, which specializes in encrypting a microSD memory card.Other efforts in the group include augmented reality technology Project Tango, modular smartphone customization effort Project Ara, and a smart contact lens that helps you manage your glucose levels.Google also shared updates today relating to Project Jacquard and Project Soli.

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