A lot to do for FP3: mains cost, RAM, storage, IP68, cover cost, thickness, weight

True, but you can only have one, at least without a giant budget. And even though about 70% of the worlds surface is covered by water I think it’s more likely to drop a phone on the ground…

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Given the quality of the FP2, I have confidence in the FP team in doing their best to improve the hardware and design for the FP3. My main request for the FP3 is to work with US networks. Given the size of the market (and the number of ethical consumers who would potentially buy the FP3), it should make sense from a business perspective.

I am curious about what the obstacle to adding compatibility with US network is: does it require additional hardware? software? or is it a business concern?

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Basically, different hardware, different certifications, new distribution/service/support networks etc. See:

Thanks, the explanation was thorough and very helpful.

Are there any financial transparency documents available? I can’t find it on the website, and that would help understand the outlook for FP future development.

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How about just upgrade the modular hardware in the already sold FP2 before of thinking of creating a FP3 ? Talking about obsolescence and reducing waste…

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If you’re asking that question, you may also be interested in this topic:


Part of the discussion there already goes into whether there should be ‘refreshes’ of FP2 modules, or whether there needs to a fundamentally different design iteration.

If this is true, I’m really disapointed to have been trapped in this big marketing gag called FP2

The modularity of the FP2 was always promoted first and foremost as a way to repair your phone easily.

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Yes, but:

This strategy absolutely works against the Idea of reducing waste due to obsolescence. At the end of the day - and I am very sorry to say that- fairphone is not any different from Samsung or Apple launching a new model all year. With the only difference that fairphone also sells parts. Parts of moderate quality and blurring this fact with all this community saving the world stuff and workarounds.

I’m really okay with the fact that the fairphone cost more than an average - comparable - phone with all the work you do to produce it fair I’m more than happy to be able to buy such a product but I except a certain quality standard, fixes for issues (and not just bloody workarounds), even when it’s waiting for an updated hardware which is easy replaceable (haha!).

This is not about the outdated OS, the bulky phone, poor Bluetooth or other issues due to a lack of quality, it is about low specs hardware that -obviously- will not be upgraded and will not motivate the users to keep the phone but just throw it away in about 1-2 years because the FP3 will still be produced fair! What a joke.

At this point I just feel stupid for have been so naive to believe this Company really tries to change something a couple of month ago, but thank you for disillusioning me.

It’s not a strategy to not upgrade modules. Unfortunately sometimes idealism is restricted by reality.
Maybe a future FP will be modular enough to be upgradable indefinately, but right now it’s simply not possible yet. Fairphone created the first ever modular smartphone - of course it’s not perfect yet!

With the exception that Fairphone still works on software upgrades for a device they stopped selling over a year ago and will continue to support old devices. They are still trying to find creative ways to get spare parts for the FP1 even though no manufactory will produce them anymore.
They are doing all they can to make sure that FP1 users don’t have to buy an FP2 - although selling FP2s is the only way for them to make money. So how exactly are they “no different from Samsung or Apple”?!

Where did you get that info? All we discussed here is that the upgradability of FP2 modules has it’s limit, but nobody ever said that the hardware will not be upgraded at all. All we know so far is they are working on an upgrade for the camera module.

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Of course it can not be perfect, but it should provide a minimum of reliability which is just not the case.

I have also doubts about fairphone willing to improve the FP2. If you look on the different topics where users have got problems, you can just find walkarounds seeming just beeing that, and not some kind of report about an issue which should be fixed - or at least there aren’t signals that FP is taking this as a issue they could fix. Is there somewhere a transparent and official list of issues concerning the hardware which will be fixed in a future model or module?

How about improving the existing model instead of experimenting on a complete new one every 2 years?
You have a basic structure with modules right? I can not imagine that there is no possibility to improve the spare parts which are built in atm. Building ONE System which Parts (Motherboard included) still have the same compatibility to each other - this is modularity which provide a long term use! This could even be cheaper than building a new one.

And this is what I thought when I bought the FP2 - I mean okay, the specs are not the best, the camera is apparently bad and the battery lifetime is poor but hey, it is built with modules wich can be upgraded - what seemed obvious to me but yes, today we have another situation.

Well…

you. For me, this sounds pretty much like “Hey, we never promised anything, so stop expecting”.
A official statement on this point would be grate. Furthermore it would help gaining some faith in the willing of FP to create better, fairer, less polluting product in long term because this is all we have at this point - faith.

You can only talk about your Fairphone, but most work without any issues. Why do people keep making this mistake?

This is a community forum, not a channel for official FP support or documentation.

I’m not aware of any hardware issues that require a module upgrade. All the known hardware issues are limited to a number of phones and are fixed by a module replacement. Maybe the production quality control could be improved to limit some of these issues.

These are the ones I’m talking about:

As I said they are working on an upgrade for the camera module. They are not working on a new phone - at least not that we know of. So where do you get the 2 years from?

Yes, Fairphone doesn’t promise things that they can’t promise. They are not idiots. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t still try.

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With the exception that Fairphone still works on software upgrades for a device they stopped selling over a year ago and will continue to support old devices. They are still trying to find creative ways to get spare parts for the FP1 even though no manufactory will produce them anymore.

Yes, but in terms of software version, others are far superior: The Samsung Galaxy S5 was sold from April 2014 (4 months later than FP1) and currently runs Android 6. The Samsung Galaxy S4 was introduced in April 2013 (almost a year before the FP1) and runs Android 5 today. For the FP1, the best we can hope for is 4.4. And talking about software longevity the crown certainly belongs to Apple: the iPhone 5, released in 2012, runs the very latest iOS version. I don’t want to say that Apple is good, there was lots and lots of news on terrible working conditions and several suicides at their manufacturer Foxconn. But that’s because Apple is greedy and they need extremely high volumes in short time. Still, their phones are usable for quite some time.

And regarding spare parts availability: Just consider the constantly sold out Display Assembly of the FP1 which will probably never become available anymore.

Fairphone needs to seek deeper partnerships with electronic service providers and continue the route of open source and also open hardware. In Austria, for example technosert (http://www.technosert.com/) is an electronic service provider that experiences a stunning growth rate. They produce almost any electronic device and claim superior longevity of their products in the field. They offer modification and repair services in addition to design, development, prototyping, etc.

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Samsung et al can afford this, yet stop support still way too soon to sell new devices. Same with chip producers like Qualcomm. Apple supports still a bit longer, but also 4-5 years is still not good enough. Google only guaranties approx. an 18 month upgrade window. Even if FP2 will get Android 6, this will buy rather little time. In the long run, FP will depend on community projects or will need to do porting by itself - and if security updates stop, and the SoC is left behind by Qualcomm, you are sooner or later fu***ed. For real longevity, you need something for mobile, what only Gnu/Linux provides for desktop machines. And this means: FP has to find a way without Android.

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I don’t even think that an alternative to Android will solve the problem, because you would still depend on on the SoC manufacturer for drivers.
If you really want to become independent you would need to make your own hardware (i.e. chips), and preferably doing that in an open source design.
This is, however, just very very unlikely if not impossible for a small company to do.
That’s also why I don’t understand sometimes when people seem to get mad at Fairphone when it doesn’t meet their expectations or hopes. As such a small company you simply are dependent on other parties, particularly on the SoC manufacturer, and they usually have no interest in supporting hardware for several years, even though current hardware would still be useful for many users years after it reached the market.
In that regard I believe that Fairphone is doing hell of a good job, in really trying what they can with their given manpower to maintain their products as well as possible. I highly appreciate the effort FP put into the work, for example, to offer 4.4 for the FP1.
Nonetheless, for me it seems clear that there are limits, if you don’t have the power to dictate the market, like some other vendors have. As disappointing as this actually may feel.

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Yes, thats the next problem: no SoC to date is open hardware. There is a nice chip-comparison for the Eoma-Project: https://www.crowdsupply.com/eoma68/micro-desktop/updates/picking-a-processor

But still: I did not mean ‘all or nothing’… :wink:

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You’re freaking kidding me right? Apple forces you to update to the newest version and with every update slows down old devices for no reason, just to remind you that not only they released a new software but also a new device that goes with it. So if you want to be able to run the new software without lagging you have to buy the new device every half a year and best put the old device in your drawer.

Exactly. Before Fairphone is not big enough to design their own chips you can’t expect them to magically solve everything that’s wrong in the mobile industry.

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That is simply not true. One has to manually install all system and app store updates. I know from personal experience. Nothing will automatically install unless you accept the license terms that come with it.

The choice on updating is on the user. Of course remaining with the operating system that was designed together with the hardware leads to the best results and some slow down must be expected as more features are packed into newer versions. Comparisons between e.g. iOS9 and 10 on an iPhone 5 I have seen on youtube do not show a dramatic change in performance. Sometimes people are simply exaggerating. Rather, the fact that there are iPhones from 2011 and 2012 still around and being used shows that longevity is not a major problem with their products.

This is also not true. Just recently I met a friend that had an iPhone 4 and is the third or fourth owner of that device. We bought an, as you put it, outdated and unusable iPhone 5s anew just last year - two years after it was introduced. If these were stories of a Fairphone everyone would shout that this was a great success. My impression is that people don’t throw away Apple products easily. People simply cannot or do not want to afford to do so, because they’re so ridiculously expensive.

Fairphone is exactly good at where Apple sucks badly, at meeting social and environmental concerns in the supply chain and the production, but at the same time Fairphone sucks where Apple shines. My FP1 camera is no match against even an iPhone 4s. The FP1 design lacks elegance and thought (try putting it without the case on a table or the volume buttons that are so dull to press through the case). There’s no arguing that the phone as it is, is rather mediocre. The thing is that still demand is for better specs more than for improved social values. Unless they do a perfect job for both, at least the Fairphone shines at putting social values first (as they say).

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This is a huge proposition - but one that could make Fairphone absolutely unique.

Openly publish the pinouts and hardware design for the Fairphone modules so that there could be an open market for upgrade modules (like Blocks)?

In this way as the community itself grows the phone more valuable.

Some analogues / examples:

  • Minecraft
  • its community of modders means that you can turn it into a wholly different game
  • and also fix bugs (if you are familiar with Minecraft you have almost certainly heard of Optifine)
  • Facebook (the more people use Facebook the more useful a means of communication it is. Also, Facebook’s appstore means that Facebook has not had to code all the different functionalities people rely on).
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Well, Apple has some qualities, that is true. What concerns the hardware, if you take care of your phone, I think that it can last pretty long and I have also seen a lot of iPhone 4s around (not the 4 anymore). It’s ok to call, to write messages, to take pictures and occasionally go on the Internet. This is why you often see older people with older iPhone they got from their friends or family. But don’t except much more if you don’t jailbreak it.
On the other hand, how many persons do you know with on iPhone in a drawer that they don’t use anymore because the battery is down or the screen is half broken and they don’t want to fix it because it was almost cheaper to get a new one with a new subscription? So Apple could be quite ecological since their hardware is good enough, but it is ridiculously hard and expensive to fix for most people.
What concerns the software, I have to agree with @paulakreuzer that Apple forces you to upgrade. Not by updating automatically, but if you don’t, a lot of apps don’t work anymore. I know people with first generation iPads they can almost not use anymore because the system is too old to use most of the apps. I feel the same about their laptops. Having a macbook that works perfectly well on 10.7.5, I don’t want to update it, but Apple doesn’t even keep Safari (their own browser) up to date for 10.7.5. So you have an older version of Safari that tells you to update. When you try to do so, you get a message about your OS being too old. So at the end you update everything, your computer is slow, so you buy the newest macbook, etc. Nice strategy!

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