3D Systems And Motorola Team Up To Deliver Modular, Customizable 3D Printed Smartphones

Motorola is forging ahead with the concept of modular, customizable smartphones first put forth by designer Dave Hakkens with his Phonebloks. The company said recently that it was officially pursuing such an idea with Project Ara, and Motorola is already putting together important partnerships to make it happen.

3D Systems, a maker of 3D printers and other related products, has signed on to create a “continuous high-speed 3D printing production platform and fulfillment system” for it. In other words, 3D Systems is going to print parts for the project, and what’s more, the company has what appears to be an exclusive agreement to make all the enclosures and modules for Project Ara.

Image credit: Motorola

"3D printing promotes a level of sustainability, functionality, and mass personalization that turns these kinds of global ambitions into attainable local realities,” said 3D Systems CEO Avi Reichental. “Project Ara combines two exponential technologies, and we expect that the resulting high-throughput advanced manufacturing platform will have far reaching implications on the entire digital thread that stitches together the factory of the future."

Motorola 3D Systems Project Ara

3D Systems is, technologically speaking, making some bold strides to take up this project. The company is expanding its multi-material printing capabilities to include conductive materials, for example, which will enable built-in technologies such as antennas.

You can join the effort by becoming an Ara Research Scout.