This article is based on all information collected through the MDK (modular development kit). The Mdk is a set of information, a guide for the development of modular technology that Google has provided to developers.
The central element of Project Ara is the endoskeleton (Endo), comparable to the motherboard of the common Pc, it’s the basic element where all modules are hooked up.
Google plans to develop 3 form factor, with variable number of modules.
The Endo, made in aluminum, is responsible only to the modules interaction with each other and to allow modules’ hot swapping, thanks to a small internal battery.
Sim slot, memory, camera, processor, and all normal functions of the traditional smartphones will be transformed into modules.
Modules will be available in 3 sizes, depending on the functions performed and will engage to the Endo by an electromagnetic system (EPM). ( Update: the final version will have a new retention technology.)
Google will use an open communication protocol, called Mipi Unipro, to exchange data between modules to the maximum speed of 10 Gbit/s.
Will be various kinds of modules, from the traditional ones (camera, battery, processor, etc.) to those with innovative features: fitness, medical, entertainment and so on.
The project will obviously have Android as the operating system, which will manage the endoskeleton and modules.
Another innovative element of Project Ara will be the possibility to customize the cover of each module.
Google with 3D Systems has developed a 3D print technology that will allow to choose the cover that users want. The printing system is based on an innovative process that reduces printing time. It’s possible that Google realizes a store dedicated to the customization of single modules.