Extending the smartphone to monitor the body and environment

Published:  January 28, 2015

By now I’m sure you’ve all heard of the modular wonder that is Google’s Project Ara — a smartphone with Lego-like components, using pieces available from independent hardware developers so you don’t get stuck in an exclusive Google trap.

Inspired by the receptive possibilities, sensor-driven studio Lapka are already determined to build elements of a phone that can read and respond to the physical world around it.

Lapka BAM Breathalyzer

Lapka’s existing BAM Breathalyzer

Lapka's Project Ara "health accessories"

Lapka’s Project Ara “health accessories”

For now, just a concept — yet Google’s doing a pretty good job of making us want a Project Ara device right here, right now — Lapka present what they’re calling a “line of healthcare accessories” with a design language inspired by “high-end sneakers with the most unique combinations of materials and textures.”

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The studio explain, “We’re eager to explore body network and personal environment, from blood and urine to radiation and carbon monoxide.” Each component registers unique elements: air quality, CO2, light, heart-rate, Glucose, breath and ‘soul’. They hope to push the limits of the proposed system, asking the questions: How can we challenge the platform? And, what if Ara’s endoskeleton were everywhere not just within a mobile phone?

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