I remember many years ago when it was impossible to buy a desktop PC for less than £1500, but you could build one for nearer £900. For many years it was cheaper to buy the components and build your own. Then along came Dell. After a couple of years the price difference was minimal and in some cases Dell was actually cheaper.
The build your own PC became an enthusiast market, either gaming machines or super quiet machines were ordered via their components, the closest most people came to the component market was to buy some extra ram.
So I am very curious to find out what project Ara will bring. Will buying the components allow you to maximise the features you want and save money on the stuff you don't care about? Will it be an enthusiast only product where people build super premium phones which cost a lot more than the current flagships just to get that extra professor boost or new sensor type?
Whenever i look for a new phone i wish i could make a hybrid of several of the current flagships. Right now i wish i could combine the camera and the microphones of the Lumia 1520, with the voice processor of the Motorola X, the self healing LG casing and the battery from the Motorola Razor Maxx and the screen from the Galaxy S5. Perhaps now I will be able to build my dream phone... Or will the project never take flight the way I want it to?