Project Ara to Abandon Electropermanent Magnets After Drop Test Failure

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Project Ara to Abandon Electropermanent Magnets After Drop Test Failure
Google's anticipated Project Ara modular smartphone was recently delayed until 2016. The company however at the time hadn't revealed its reasons for delaying the project. Now, the Project Ara team in tweets has tried to explain the reason for the delay of the modular smartphone project. It said drop test failures caused it reconsider the use of the electropermanent magnets for holding the hardware modules together, as the smartphones broke apart into their component modules when dropped.

In the first tweet, Project Ara's Twitter handle said, "No more electropermanent magnets," accompanied by ProjectAra and FailedTheDropTest hashtags.

In another following tweet, it said, "We are testing a signature experience to attach/detach modules." The tweet confirms that the company is now testing an alternate option to attach and detach modules on the modular phone. While the company is yet to explain what does it mean by "signature experience."

The Project Ara team at the beginning of this year had announced it would launch the modular smartphones in Puerto Rico in 2015 as part of its pilot program. The team however recently confirmed that its phones would not launch until 2016, alongside announcing a "pilot market re-route" to a few locations in the US instead of Puerto Rico.

Announcing the news, the Project Ara team via its Twitter handle had in a series of tweets revealed that few locations in the US will see the Project Ara modular smartphone. The company had also cited "lots of iterations" in the works as a reason for delay.

To refresh, Google's concept for Project Ara is to enable consumers to design their own smartphones, and decide to add features as they need. The project hopes to kick-start an era of do-it-yourself smartphones and Google has been stressing that it's not targeting geeks. In January, Google had showcased its Spiral 2 modular smartphone prototype.


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Further reading: Google, Mobiles, Project Ara, Smartphones
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