Google has essentially given up on its longtime dream to revolutionize smartphones with modular “Project Ara” designs, LG got off to an arguably shaky start, as the G5’s “Friends” failed to gain mainstream traction, which leaves just Motorola fully committed to the neat but tricky concept.
Well, perhaps “fully committed” is a bit of a stretch, seeing as how the Moto Mods selection remains relatively limited, and instead of pouring more internal resources into building other “snap-on” Moto Z accessories, Lenovo wants you to lend a hand.
We’re not talking a new wave of Development Kit availability expansions, but rather a full-blown Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign and “Transform the Smartphone” challenge. Between today, November 3, and January 31, 2017, Lenovo, Motorola and Verizon will take pitches from aspiring businessmen and devs for Moto Mods prototypes.
The actual fundraisers kick off January 3, then all campaigns are reviewed in early March, ten finalists enter the last stage of the creative competition, with their ideas presented in Chicago at the end of the month.
A shot at “funding, distribution agreements, and more from Lenovo, Verizon and their partners” will be offered at that point to the lucky, ingenious few, with “up to $1 million” set aside by Lenovo Capital for investments to “help bring the best Moto Mods ideas to market.” Sounds a little convoluted and time-wasting for phones that need compelling new selling points today, though we’re guessing that if your design is really impressive, development and production could always be accelerated.