Google Project Ara phone launching first in Puerto Rico

Project Ara release revealed

Google will launch its modular Project Ara smartphone in a pilot program in Puerto Rico first, the company announced at its second Ara developer conference.

The do-it-yourself phone will launch in Puerto Rico as a test market in the second half of 2015 through carriers OpenMobile and Claro.

Project Ara lets users customize their phones with standalone modules for cameras, processors, storage, batteries, and other components that can be purchased individually and swapped out at will.

The power of choice

Google debuted 11 new first-party prototype modules at the conference, but with third parties' contributions taken into account there should be between 20 and 30 available across ten different categories when Ara launches in Puerto Rico.

Project Ara head Paul Eremenko said the test program's purpose is in part to determine how Google can best "curate and manage" the many choices Ara purchasers will be faced with, The Verge reports.

And even as the pilot program approaches Google is working on an improved version of its "Spiral 2" Ara prototype with a more robust design and more up-to-date capabilities.

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