Modular smartphones are incredibly cool, but the design philosophy never really caught on. Sure, brands like Fairphone, LG, and Motorola have launched products to market, and even Google at one point dipped a cautious toe into the pool. But if a company launched a modular phone today, would you buy it?
That’s a question we posed to our readers in a recent poll, and the results are now in!
Would you purchase a modular smartphone?
We saw just under 1,900 votes cast on this poll since it went live on September 6. The tally reveals that 69% of respondents would buy a modular smartphone if one were available today. That equates to more than two in every three readers. However, some still feel the design philosophy wouldn’t stand up to traditional phones. Around 31% of the voters on this poll wouldn’t bite.
While a fully modular phone would theoretically let users mix and match specific components, it seems some readers want control over some components. Removable batteries or modules that allow for more storage are attractive, in a similar vein to LG’s G5 and Motorola’s Moto Mods series. Modular parts would also give buyers more control over replacements or upgrades.
That said, it’s not immediately clear how modular phone design could improve the day-t0-day user experience of today’s smartphone offerings. Would the likely premium for OEMs and consumers be worth it, especially if modern smartphones come with most bells and whistles anyway? Well, peruse some of the reader comments on this poll below.
- Joe Black: Replaceable battery would be awesome, other than that, I seriously do not care.
- needa: The Fairphone is the perfect idea. If they could trim it down, update the processor to something respectable, figure out the massive software issues they face, and sell it in the states… I’d buy it in a heartbeat.
- Evie: No, Not even sure how modularity would improve my experience. I need a large screen, decent sound, and a reasonable amount of ram and memory.
- roaduardo: Nothing I’ve seen convinces me that modular phones would work well. If someone can do it and does not need a Kickstarter, like form a proper firm, I’ll take a look and wait a few generations.
- Craig Southwick: I would like to say yes. The real answer is a qualified yes. I haven’t seen anything that gives me confidence that this will work. The Motorola try had possibilities but they abandoned it so everyone got burned. So I answered no because in the next 2-3 years I am not even considering it.
- Fredrik Sedlem: Not in the current form with “Lego pieces.” But stuff is becoming modular if you think outside the box/phone. Storage and processing in the cloud. Smartwatches, smart headphones, power banks, etc.
- Jeff Namhie: No. Just put everything I want in one integrated device.
That’s it for this poll. Thanks for your votes and comments. If you have any thoughts about modular phones or the results of this poll, be sure to drop a line below.