Back in the spring of 2016, things were looking up for the potential future of modular smartphones. The promise of clipping a great camera onto your phone, or slipping on a powerful set of speakers when needed, resulted in some people getting excited about the release of the LG G5 and the pre-release modular Project Ara smartphone from Google.
By this fall, however, much of that potential seems to be completely forgotten, with Project Ara canned over the summer, and the LG G5 failing to impress consumers in the way LG had hoped. This week, a report has surfaced saying that plans for the successor to the G5 do not include modular components. The report notes a number of issues, including low sales volumes, smaller production yields, and the complication of requiring multiple separate purchases confusing consumers.
The Moto Z and Moto Z Play, also released this year, is now the best hope for the future full of modular smartphones, but given the relative failure of the other phones in this market, it remains to be seen if Lenovo’s Moto line can succeed where others failed. Given newer smartphones such as the iPhone have even gone so far as to include dual cameras, the simplicity of that setup trumps other factors like a higher cost for building in those components.