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Modular Smartphones: Explained!

Click Here for Top notch smartphone accessories.

The modular phone dream has evolved…

Project Ara Update:

Video Gear I use:

Intro Track: Ongoing Thing by 20syl, Oddisee

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Posted in SmartphonesTagged , , , , , ,

75 COMMENTS

Xayr - posted on June 3, 2016 7:44 pm

GOD DAMN IT WHEN HE SAID OK GOOGLE MY PHONE RESPONDED LMAO

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Vladimir Putin - posted on June 17, 2016 9:00 am

i Uninstalled that feature XD

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Chrys_Playz - posted on July 2, 2016 1:54 pm

XD WTF AMAZING

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Chris L - posted on June 3, 2016 10:54 pm

Modular is all BS. Even pc’s are not modular. You have to upgrade the ram
with new motherboards and cpu. Its only truly modular for half a generation
and then all new parts anyway. The only thing on my pc from 10 tens ago is
the power supply, case and fans. I wouldn’t get my hopes up about modular
smartphones if I were MKBHD. It’s a failure from the start.

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-T-X-M- - posted on June 10, 2016 2:11 am

+FlyingPenguin Yeah, it could grow like PCs so that in the end everyone can
have their own kinda unique phone. It’s a really good idea, I’d love if I
could add some RAM to my phone so it can support Win10

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RoundDuckMan - posted on June 19, 2016 12:08 am

It isn’t, not every potential phone user is some fucking hipster that wants
“pretti light and thind phonzes,” some are power users that want their
phones as tools, not be toys that are less useful than even a PocketCHIP.

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Aron Mathew - posted on July 1, 2016 12:13 pm

+RoundDuckMan tools for what exactly? The current potential for getting
anything realistic done on an iPhone or Android is too small for a “power
user” to be thing.
Your description of a power user is simply someone who will pay more as
long as there is ‘more’, not considering how much of those resources they
actually end up using in their ‘power usage’

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RoundDuckMan - posted on July 1, 2016 12:29 pm

+Aron Mathew As in you can use them for important and cool stuff, like
creating stuff on the go when a laptop isn’t an option.

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Air stuff17 - posted on July 14, 2016 12:33 pm

Pc’s are modular. You can replace anything and keep anything. You don’t
have to upgrade multiple things at once.

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Droid Tweaker - posted on June 4, 2016 1:08 am

When modular phones are released. The phones will cost under $100 but the
modules will be about $100 each.

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SlyCedix - posted on June 16, 2016 5:28 am

+Dylan Robertson not just that, producing a proprietary processing unit
isn’t cheap

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Kanden Marriott - posted on June 20, 2016 9:08 pm

Not true because then people would just but whole new phones because it
would be cheaper than replacing modules

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Mohmmad Talha - posted on June 5, 2016 3:46 am

2:00 MKBHD is jealous………………….

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D3ADL0CK3D ツ™ - posted on June 5, 2016 5:07 am

xD

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CeeKay epic videos - posted on June 5, 2016 2:26 pm

Shoot I lost my Ram

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Verzadus - posted on June 12, 2016 10:35 pm

+Iron Squid Yeah, I thought it was hilarious 🙂

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Verzadus - posted on June 12, 2016 10:35 pm

+Iron Squid Yeah, I thought it was hilarious 🙂

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Christopher O'Grady - posted on June 13, 2016 9:17 am

+Verzadus thanks those of you who enjoyed the joke. Those of you who didn’t
get it, what are you doing on MKBHD? RAM is essentially a short term memory
cache so you can make the analogy to sort term human memory, instead of
life long memories. If you thought you just dropped something that would be
registered in your short term memory, it wouldn’t form a hard wired
neurological connection. So the joke works. Losers.

Reply
mcneese68 - posted on June 5, 2016 4:15 pm

So it’s basically a high tech breadboard.

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NerdishAzn - posted on June 6, 2016 5:26 pm

It’s basically a motherboard for a PC. Because it is one.

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Rice Cake - posted on June 6, 2016 9:28 pm

+NerdishAzn u wish u had a maingear?

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NerdishAzn - posted on June 6, 2016 10:21 pm

+Rice Cake Honestly I’ve had this icon forever. Maybe 2 or 3 years now? Was
looking at pre-built PC’s because I was afraid to build my own PC but I
ended up building it in the long run. Easier than I thought. Just stressful
with parts that could be DOA.

Reply
Scalqer - posted on June 5, 2016 9:41 pm

Can’t wait to run my phone with two 1080s in a sli config along side a
Xeon.

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John Ruter - posted on June 6, 2016 11:48 pm

Yeah I can’t wait to play gta v on ultra settings in 4k on my phone

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-T-X-M- - posted on June 9, 2016 2:01 pm

I’d probably have an RX 480 😀

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Okts Chill - posted on June 10, 2016 1:42 pm

Well, I have Radeon 5450 “hd” lol

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LoisNarag - posted on June 6, 2016 3:02 am

1 battery, we want longer battery life
2 memory, we want storage with high capacity
3 cpu/ram, if its running slow we want to just swap it
4 screen, if its scratched or shattered, of course we want a replacement
5 camera, everyone loves a great camera

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Mohammad Rahman - posted on June 7, 2016 11:00 am

PREACH PREACH PREACH

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Jawz4Lyfe - posted on June 20, 2016 5:00 pm

The main thing that will run slow in a phone or computer is the harddrive
(memory). Most of the time, there wouldn’t even be a need to upgrade the
CPU/RAM.

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Typhoon792 - posted on June 7, 2016 10:56 pm

Wait, what? I don’t remember them saying that the CPU, GPU, and RAM
wouldn’t be hot swappable. I think it might’ve been said that it all comes
packaged in one block, but otherwise, the way they showed it, they gave the
impression that everything was still swappable. Can someone please
enlighten me?

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Angel Trogler - posted on June 19, 2016 1:22 am

+RoundDuckMan we can only hope. and i mean i had the iphone 4s for until a
month ago so im used to the overshadow haha. but for sure its my opinion,
we all have different opinions

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RoundDuckMan - posted on June 19, 2016 2:45 pm

+Typhoon792 Well it’s not finished yet, duh. But they were one of the first
efforts for modular phones.

And I don’t care if the phone is a brick or is thin as paper, as long it’s
capable and can fit my pocket it’s fine.

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Angel Trogler - posted on June 19, 2016 3:04 pm

+RoundDuckMan id have to agree with u there. im ok with a bit of bulk as
long as it fits in my pocket. people buy iphones then use otterboxes i mean
bulk shouldnt be a problem

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RoundDuckMan - posted on June 19, 2016 3:31 pm

+Angel Trogler Makes me wonder why they buy light, thin, and pretty phones
when they put some ugly case that look like it came out of a mud pit in
some swamp where a nearby redneck lives at.

Reply
CrilleMega - posted on June 8, 2016 1:28 am

Modular phones are like the half-life 3 of the phone world.

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sguitas - posted on June 8, 2016 11:51 am

I don’t think that will be a trend… Phones changes every year in design,
usb port, etc… Basicaly you will have the same phone design and you will
want to get rid of it

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sguitas - posted on June 8, 2016 5:28 pm

+Devon Johnson I never had an iphone

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Underrated Critic - posted on June 9, 2016 1:40 pm

*you’re

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masswhite - posted on June 19, 2016 2:45 am

It will, but at the same time it’s extremely niche on the community unless
it picks up big waves… Which… you’re right!
It’ll take a lot to persuade someone to completely commit to a project
phone.

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Happ MacDonald - posted on June 8, 2016 2:17 am

IMO Smart Phones are simply too small and have too many durability
requirements with material and structural tech that is changing too fast to
be modular.

You need your phone to survive drops and falls. You need your phone to be
small, so all of the extra consumer-accessible faceplates take up valuable
volume. Your parts need to communicate quickly, so centralized connectors
between modules take up too much volume compared to microscopic IC leads
threaded through a monolithic mainboard. Small space requirements also mean
that from gen 2 to gen 3 of a given phone model change everything about the
materials the phones are made out of and how parts are packed together in
order to free up precious cubic milimeters of volume and milligrams of mass
and evolving thermal properties to allow greater capacity or more features:
any modular skeleton you fashion loses it’s flexibility to do that from one
year to the next.

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SadYummyMummy 123 - posted on June 8, 2016 6:57 am

The skeleton in Ara is supposed to be usable for years before it needs
changing. And even then, it won’t cost more than 50~ dollars.

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Happ MacDonald - posted on June 8, 2016 1:23 pm

1. “Supposed to be” for a phone which raised crowdfunding but never left
design phase. Something something hatching counted chickens.

2. Nothing you’ve said actually contradicts any of the things I’ve said. I
can buy a working HP Jordana Pocket PC from 1998 for less than $50, but
even if some engineering wizard offered to gut that and solder in
contemporary components for a grand total cost of $300 without altering
it’s chassis, the project could still never *possibly* result in a
telephone more functionally or aesthetically valuable (beyond kitsch) than
virtually any ordinary $300 smartphone.

It would be slow because of the arbitrary size constraints against
components never meant for this chassis shape, and because of being stuck
with sub-sub-optimal wiring options, RF would be in the toilet since the
case was never designed for that either, and I haven’t even *gotten* to the
wasted power and volume coming from dozens of centrally located,
shift-resistant internal connector ports that any *actual* modular phone
design would suffer from! ;P

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SadYummyMummy 123 - posted on June 9, 2016 11:40 am

+Happ MacDonald I’m not that tech-savvy, but I know that it’s been said
that the biggest connectors on Ara will send information at 20GB/sec which
should be far more than what’s needed the coming years. It’s a fact that it
will be bigger and heavier than a regular phone, but I’m not expecting this
to be a too big issue. Just look that the iPhone 6S, or the SE. I don’t
have a problem with a phone being nearly double the thickness if it can
have a dedicated GPU from Nvidia :D.

And Ara will probably survive drops like a normal phone, except you can fix
a broken screen yourself. I must agree that it won’t be a phone for most
regular users though.

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kavin “Gamersaliteplus” rajakaruna - posted on June 8, 2016 4:47 am

i think that this will never happen, all phone companies want money and if
u can just switch a part out if it breaks, the phone companies will never
make profit.

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Ashwin George - posted on June 8, 2016 5:33 am

true , but the potential of losing out to competitors on the next big idea
will also drive companies to invest in modular phones. it goes without
saying that after selling the phones, many will try to make the parts
unique ,so that only they can sell them , like apple .

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valdemar konan - posted on June 9, 2016 11:35 am

maybe they will make even more upgradable phones over the
years/companies.like for example:
sony makes a modular phone capable of that much upgrading,but for example
LG make an even more upgradable one and so on.or maybe they will just keep
on adding different modules which can be added,like
thermometer,compass,anal pressure detector etc….

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ShivaNNH - posted on June 14, 2016 10:57 am

They’ll make tons of money because you will have to buy the parts from them

Reply
Imam SW - posted on June 8, 2016 5:37 am

that corsair cx500m is semi-modular

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Jacob Soupe - posted on June 8, 2016 10:10 am

I noticed that

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Justin LaBarge - posted on June 8, 2016 9:06 pm

I saw that too

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Artie Lopez - posted on June 9, 2016 4:04 pm

I was going to say that

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James Small - posted on June 9, 2016 10:10 pm

Beat me to it

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Aran Grover - posted on June 29, 2016 12:00 pm

INIT

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danielkzlai - posted on June 8, 2016 5:51 am

The thing about electronics nowadays is that the circuit connecting
everything together is very compact and everything is super densely packed.
This is the reason Apple is getting rid of the audio jack, cos it takes up
too much space. Having modular parts means every part needs some sort of
mechanism to attach it to the circuit, which consumes space, which is hard
to engineer into the same form factor.

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TheKingsHill - posted on June 8, 2016 11:34 pm

The issue isn’t that the phones are too compact and modular phones would
take up too much space.
The issue is: how do you convince these huge smartphone companies to cater
to a relatively small consumer group and potentially lose money at the same
time.
Rather than soldering cpus and gpus to a motherboard, you’d be creating a
motherboard with attachments nodes in place of where those specifics parts
may or should be. It may initially take up more space but it shouldn’t take
up much more space that it’s not do-able.
But how do you justify modular phones to these huge companies? They’d
surely be losing a LOT of money if these became widespread, more commonly
bought than traditional smartphones. The reason we want modular phones is
that they’d be more economical for us the consumer.
Also, the decision to get rid of the audio jack wasn’t just a size
constraint. It was also a chance to create more profit. It creates more of
a market for wireless headphones/earbuds which Apple could market to their
consumers. It pushes previous iPhone users to upgrade to the latest iPhone
because of the very obvious difference (“You have a headphone jack, you
don’t have the newest iPhone”). It allows them to put more tech into the
iPhone allowing them to raise the price without lowering the
cost-performance. There are so many reasons why Apple could justify
removing the jack. But how do you justify modular phones to these companies?

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Jordan Sinn - posted on June 14, 2016 6:18 am

You’re absolutely wrong, TheKingsHill has it right.

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Antonis Kolovos - posted on July 5, 2016 4:40 pm

Its not a simple matter of adding a socket. Pretty much the entire computer
is in a single chip and the rest of the(supporting) circuitry is custom to
it. You cannot simply lift it up and replace it with a newer one. The
market is entirely different from the PC one where you get compatible
motherbards/chipsets and cpus. There is no compatibility within the SoC
that are used so you would need a lot of extra circuitry to make it work. I
wont say its impossible but it sounds highly inpractical. The whole thing
with these mobile devices is high integration, it doesnt really go well
with modularity.

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LDM // - posted on June 8, 2016 10:47 am

MARK MY WORDS I WILL MAKE A MODULAR PHONE

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Akshay Bhurke - posted on June 10, 2016 3:30 pm

Do you have any experience in the field, or are you just saying that? 😛

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LDM // - posted on June 10, 2016 7:18 pm

+Akshay Bhurke I’ve done a ton of PC building and software development….
I’ll figure it out haha

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Akshay Bhurke - posted on June 11, 2016 5:32 pm

Haha just asking cause I’m a Product Designer 😛 When I saw your post I
thought I could’ve designed it for you or something 😛

Reply
Madara Uchiha - posted on June 14, 2016 9:59 am

u sound like some anime hero

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Xoreign - posted on June 19, 2016 4:02 pm

+Priyanshu Samir since when do your limitations apply to other people.

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Kevin J Burrell - posted on June 9, 2016 11:24 am

I can’t wait for them to be released

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VVV VVV - posted on June 9, 2016 1:34 pm

yeah!

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SterDuck420 - posted on June 21, 2016 3:12 pm

For decent modular phone, google would take at least 4 years, and maybe it
won’t even happen.

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200feliks - posted on June 9, 2016 2:44 pm

he said high at 4:20

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Friedrich Nietzsche - posted on June 10, 2016 10:23 pm

+AbuJafar Choudhury gotta be an easter egg, probability of that happening
is insane.

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Mohammed Zaid - posted on June 12, 2016 5:44 pm

Illuminati confirmed

Reply
Steve plays Steve plays - posted on June 18, 2016 7:07 am

oh yeh

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Visatron - posted on June 20, 2016 6:24 am

+Steve plays Steve plays wow

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ryujinjakk4 - posted on June 10, 2016 8:00 pm

My battery is on 3% and my charger is at the other side of the room and I
can’t be arsed getting up, what do I do? ????

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Drake - posted on June 11, 2016 3:37 pm

call Donald Trump

Reply
Daniel Bell - posted on June 20, 2016 5:24 am

+Drake OMG, Drake? Is that you?!

Reply
Alexander Junod - posted on June 25, 2016 10:05 am

use the force luke

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