A Spanish company by the name of ImasD is working to solve one of my complaints against Project Ara: the size.
Earlier this week imasD unveiled the, a modular tablet with removable modules for the CPU, storage, connectivity, battery, and more.
Due to ship later this year, the Click-ARM One is still more of a prototype than a complete system with multiple alternative components.
The first production run is just now going up for pre-order. It's going to be based on a 10" Samsung screen and run your choice of Ubuntu, Tizen, or Android on an Exynos 4412 CPU with 2GB RAM. The Click-ARM One will also have a 16GB storage module as well as other modules. (I would assume there is a battery and Wifi module, but they're not mentioned specifically.)
The backbone of this system is a board which combines both ImasD's proprietary ARM (Advanced Removable Modules) tech as well as slots for mini-PCIe boards:
The ARM will go in the white squares labeled modules, while the mini-PCIe boards will go in the cutouts to the left and right. And yes, it does look like they'll have slots for up to 4 mini-PCIe cards.
Theis up for pre-order now. The price plus shipping is 289 euros, and shipping to the US is not an option (I tried).
All in all this looks like a nifty idea, and I'm thrilled to see the multiple Samsung connections. It's not just that I assume Samsung will pilfer any of the ideas which prove useful, but also that imasD had to have at least some Samsung assistance in designing this tablet. That gives it a better chance of actually shipping, IMO.
But I'm not so sure about iMasD's other partner.
This tablet came across my desk in connection to the PuzzlePhone, a modular smartphone being by the Finnish Circular Devices. The PuzzlePhone is a much simpler alternative to Project Ara which combines a minimum of modules into a smartphone:
The PuzzlePhone will be using ARM tech for its CPU module.