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Sony XTRUD concept Android smartphone would let users perform hardware upgrades

The Sony XTRUD concept Android phone is a device that would let users easily replace hardware and customize its appearance, according to the designer that imagined it.
June 28, 2013
Sony XTRUD concept

A designer proposes an out-of-the-box Android smartphone design, which would let the user easily upgrade various internal components, replace broken parts, but also personalize the overall appearance of the hadnset.

The Sony XTRUD, imagined by designer Francois Rybarczyk, is the device in question, one that would certainly be appreciated by those Android handset buyers that would love to take tinkering with their smartphone to the next level.

What Rybarczyk offers us is a concept sort of similar to what early Moto X phone rumors suggested, that the handset will have user customizable hardware. But the XTRUD would continue to be upgraded once new components are available.

The Sony XTRUD would let users actually perform their own upgrades as time passes by, in order for their device to stay relevant in terms of hardware, but also in terms of software – after all, having the latest hardware ensures that an “old device” would still be updated to the latest Android version.

Users would also be able to change the color of their XTRUD handset, although they’d be stuck with the same overall phone design for years – assuming that’s not a problem for most people.

The XTRUD would feature an easily accessible modular system that would let users swap old displays, batteries, cameras and maybe even mainboards to newer versions, without spending a lot of cash on a new smartphone purchase. The device would be made of aluminum or plastic and would feature a thin profile.

Rybarczyk imagines a starting price for the handset at $199 – presumably without a contract – although I’m sure that neither OEMs nor carriers would be interested in selling such devices to customers, because they’d lose out on a lot of smartphone sales each year even though they could end up selling plenty of components.

That said, the concept handset does look interesting– and we’ll add that it does remind us of certain Nokia design lines when looking at it, even though Sony is the targeted company here. We’re certainly hoping some OEMs are paying attention; after all, who knows what the future may hold in terms of smartphone design?