The Modu Mobile is the world’s first modular phone ! It was created in 2009 by an Israeli company founded by Dov Moran.
The overall concept is quite simple. The core of this platform is a small (72x37x7.8 mm), rectangular device (Modu phone) with a tiny screen (1.3 inch) and just seven buttons.
Modu isn’t a smartphone, it has only basic features. The phone’s software is very simple; it makes calls, sends messages, keeps a calendar, plays music, displays images. No games, no FM radio, no GPS. The Modu Phone doesn’t have a regular keypad, but only a five-way navigational pad to navigate in the screen menu.
Modu enabled users to personalize their mobile’s looks and features, in a simple way, by inserting it into a range of unique phone enclosures, known as Modu jackets. The Modu Jackets are the most innovative elements, which transforms Modu in the first modular cellphone.
For example, the Night jacket module adds a full keypad, a 3.2 megapixel camera with flash, surrounding lights and external volume controls.
There are many jackets available, to change the design or add extra functions like big screen, speakers and photo frames. These modules often change the phone’s user interface too.
The Modu was sold in a package with two jackets for 200 euros (about $254) in Usa, Uk, Australia, Russia, and Israel.
In 2010 was launched Modu T with a 2.2 inch touch screen.
Modu developed new jackets: camera module, Qwerty keyboard, fitness band and others.
Unfortunately, Modu was a big failure. On January 2011, Modu ceased its operations. In mid May 2011 Google (Project Ara developer) acquired several Modu Mobile patents for $4.9 million.