Project Ara gets “trailblazer” Rockchip processor

Motorola AraQuietly but surely, Google’s ATAP team is making progress on its Project Ara modular phone. Timelines appear to have slipped some with a third design spiral prototype not expected until early 2015 at this point. But it’s not all bad news. In a Google+ update this week, Paul Eremenko, the Head of Project Ara, revealed that Project Ara is getting a new Rockchip processor described as a “trailblazer for our vision of a modular architecture.”

The new SoC will use a native, general-purpose UniPro interface. As a result, it will not require a bridge chip when being used as a module’s processor.

ATAP just kicked off the project’s second design spiral. As part of this new development cycle, a “major” new MDK release and new developer hardware are being readied in time for a second Developers Conference later this year.

In the meantime, ATAP expects to begin shipping Ara prototypes to its first 100 Project Ara scouts “within the next two weeks.” It had been hoping to have them out earlier but ra manufacturing flaw by which boards were plated with the incorrect material caused a delay of several weeks. The version being sent out will use Toshiba SoCs.

Google is aiming to have the first Project Ara smartphones out in early 2015. Its January 2015 date though appears at risk and has likely slipped but Google has yet to provide an update. One is likely at its next Developers Conference.

Source : +GoogleATAP