One of the most exciting mobile developments of recent times, Project Ara has been a long time coming, but it seems that it will be taking even longer than originally expected.
Google confirmed this week that the modular smartphone won’t be hitting the market this year, with a trial of the phone pushed back until 2016.
The @ProjectAra Twitter feed issued the bad news to fans earlier on this week, putting an end to the hopes for the opening trial of the ‘DIY’ handset which was due to hit Puerto Rico toward the end of the year.
Google was quick to mention that it wasn’t ‘goodbye’ to Puerto Rico, meaning that a trial is still likely to make an appearance there in some form, although it could be a while off. It also claimed that it was looking at new locations to trial the phone, most likely to be based in the United States.
The move has been made to postpone the handset’s launch due to the length of time that the device has been in the prototyping phase. Also, the company is hoping to give users more space for extra modules, meaning it should result in more powerful versions of the phone when it does eventually launch.
Unfortunately, Google hasn’t pointed out exactly when Project Ara will be making its appearance on the mobile market, other than giving us a vague 2016 timeframe.
This doesn’t exactly offer much promise for fans of the handset, who are now set for a lengthy wait. What makes things worse is that if Google was close to launch, it would have likely pinpointed Q1 or Q2 2016 as a potential launch. This means that it’s likely that it could prove to be another 12 months or so before the handset does arrive.
Of course, Google isn’t under that much pressure to launch the handset at the moment, with no other modular handsets even being talked about, other than one which mysteriously disappeared earlier on this year after beginning its crowdfunding process.
Either way, Project Ara will only launch when it’s good and ready, be that in 2016 or even sometime after that…
Written by Luke Hatfield