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Image credit: Google ATAP via YouTube

Google officially ends its Project Ara modular phone initiative

But don't say goodbye to swappable speakers just yet.
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Google ATAP via YouTube

Google has shut down its modular smartphone initiative, Project Ara, a spokesperson confirmed to VentureBeat today. This follows an earlier report from Reuters that claimed Google was finished with Project Ara. We've reached out to Google for confirmation and will update this article as the company responds.

The spokesperson didn't offer any details about the shutdown, VentureBeat reports, though Reuters said it was "part of a broader push to streamline the company's hardware efforts." A modular design complicates the hardware production process since Google would not only have to manufacture a bunch of smartphones but also all of the detachable cameras, battery packs, speakers and other accessories that would make each phone unique.

Project Ara has been in the works for three years at Google and in August of last year its public reveal was delayed to 2016.

However, Project Ara may live on. Reuters says that Google might still license out the project's technology to other manufacturers.

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