Build, modify, and customise your smartphone

The RePhone is the next generation of customisable technology that lets users build, hack, and modify a smartphone.

According to Chinese hardware innovation platform, Seeed, today’s smartphones offer little in terms of variation as the majority of popular brands come in the same rectangular, touchscreen form. But what if we could customise our technology to fit individual needs? That’s the idea behind RePhone, a modular phone kit that allows users to build, customise and modify a smartphone in minutes.

A few days ago, Seeed launched a crowd-funding campaign on Kickstarter, calling for support for its modular open source phone kit. RePhone comes in three kits; the RePhone Core Module GSM + BLE, RePhone Core Module 3G and RePhone kit Create.

The RePhone Core Module GSM+BLE is a tiny computer chip that has been hailed as the world’s smallest System-on-Chip (SOC). It handles the various communications protocols on offer and supports quad-band 850/900/1800/1900MHz for connecting to any global GSM network.

The RePhone Kit Create is the heart of the process. It includes an audio module, a 1.54'' touchscreen, a 520 mAh battery and two Kraft Paper cut-outs to customise your RePhone casing.

Programmers can look forward to open source software libraries that include Arduino IDE, Lua and Javascript languages. Non-programmers are taken care of with drag and drop files that can be downloaded and put onto your phone.

The system, once programmed, can perform the usual phone features like text, calling, and music but it can also be used to keep tabs on living things like pets, and turn inanimate objects into sources of communication. For instance, when connected to a kite, the RePhone can send a message to your smartphone, telling you how high it is, what the weather’s like and more.

Seeed plans to start shipping after all its backers have received their devices in 2016. 

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