Phonebloks founder: we're not another Ubuntu Edge
By Shona Ghosh
Posted on 27 Nov 2013 at 15:49
Phonebloks founder Dave Hakkens has batted away suggestions that his "modular smartphone" project won't see the light of day.
The idea behind Phonebloks is to create highly customisable phones, where users can replace individual components when they wear out or require an upgrade. Each component comes in the form of a "module" which can be slotted into the phone's body.
Hakkens is raising money via Kickstarter to bring the first phones and modules to fruition, and has already signed up Motorola as his first hardware partner.
But critics have drawn comparisons with Phonebloks and Canonical's ill-fated attempt to crowdfund the Ubuntu Edge smartphone, which fell short of its target by $20 million.
In an interview with PC Pro, Hakkens dismissed the comparison. He said that if he'd launched straight into a crowdfunding campaign, instead of working with partners and developers first, "it would have ended like Ubuntu".
"We have a lot of interest and people who want to work on it," he added. "We’re heading somewhere: I don’t think it will drop dead."
3D printed phones
Hakkens pointed to the partnership with Motorola as proof of momentum. He also praised Motorola's recent development agreement with 3D-printing firm 3D Systems to produce the first modules.
"It’s a nice direction to go in with this project because we’re all thinking [that it shouldn't be] huge-scale factories to produce, say, thousands of the same iPhones, but that it would be nice to have a technique to produce a couple of thousand blocks," he said. "We need to adapt the techniques we use to produce phones."
However, Hakkens couldn't say how much a device or individual modules might cost.
He added that Phonebloks and Motorola would release the first developers' kit later this year for anyone who wants to create modules.
Is your business a social business? For helpful info and tips visit our hub.
- iPad sales stall as owners "too happy to upgrade"
- iPhone 6 features, specs and UK release date: when does the iPhone 6 launch?
- iWatch UK release date, specs and price rumours: when is the iWatch coming to the UK?
- Piracy warning letters: four strikes and you're not out
- iPhone 6's Apple logo may light up for notifications
- How Google Glass ruined my lunch hour
- Smartphone battery packs: can a USB power pack beat the festival battery blues?
- Windows Easy Transfer – not so "easy" in Windows 8.1
- Formula 1: what a difference virtualisation makes
- Office of the future: comfy chairs and tablets everywhere
- I went to Glastonbury and the only thing that got high was my smartphone
- Meet the robots helping teach children
- PaperLater: would you pay to print the internet?
- Amazon vs Kobo: how much to make the ebook switch?
- Phishing emails: how I nearly got caught out
- How to add in-app purchasing to an iPhone, Android or Windows app
- Remote-control ransomware: TeamViewer and software hardball
- Why laptops with serial ports matter to the Internet of Things
- Make your mobile battery last longer
- Small steps into handling Big Data
- Nexus 5: does it really run stock Android?
- How to get broadband to a garden office
- How to write your company's IT security policy
- Raspberry Pi and Wolfram: a must-have for every child
- Could you get by with Office Web Apps?