TechSpot: Phonebloks, A Could-Be Everlasting Smartphone
When you get a phone, you know it may not last very long. You can easily drop it or leave it somewhere. Many companies offer cases to protect it, but most just don’t look good, and the look is half a phone’s worth. Plus, even if you do make it for a year or two, a new model will come out and you’ll throw yours away. That creates a lot of “electronic waste” that crowds landfills. This is the problem that Phonebloks is supposed to help fix.
Phonebloks is a interesting concept for a phone that can last a very long time, because it has easily replaceable parts. But before I go into the actual design, remember that it only at concept stage, and is not yet designed to look as slick and as thin as possible. Anyway, the main design for Phonebloks consists of three layers. Of course, the first is the screen. In the middle, there is the motherboard, base, or whatever you prefer to call it. Third is the layer that sets Phonebloks apart from other devices.
On the back of the middle layer, there are holes, similar to breadboards for you engineers out there. For the device to work, you have to snap in little blocks that make up the whole of the phone. Each block represents a different part of a smartphone, and when you snap them in, the smartphone works. So whenever your phone slows up, or the screen shatters, you can just replace the block. Also, different companies make their own blocks, so you could (conceivably) get a Apple camera, a Samsung battery, and Nokia form factor.
Another great capability of Phonebloks is that you can customize your phone. If you love to take pictures, upgrade your camera block while keeping your processor and storage the same, if you just upload your photos, anyway. Or, if you like to surf the internet or Instagram constantly, improve your antenna and Wifi blocks. You decide for yourself. Overall, it is an interesting concept/prototype, with good intentions, despite a potentially high cost and questionable implementation. We can just hope it actually comes to this crazy phone market and sells.