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modular smartphone

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

A modular smartphone is a cellphone that can be upgraded through the attachment or replacement of discrete components.

Benefits of modular smartphones:

  • Customers only pay for the features they use and can upgrade as needs and technologies change.
  • Replacing components is less expensive than replacing the phone.
  • There is less e-waste because the phone can be upgraded rather than replaced.
  • When components fail, only the broken modules will need to be replaced.
  • User serviceability.

Phonebloks is an open source modular cellphone design that was originally conceptualized as a means of reducing e-waste. Motorola is working on a similar project, Ara. The Phonebloks community provides input to project Ara.

See a video about Phonebloks:

This was last updated in October 2013

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