Advocating a FP2 mini

Some more statistics mainly from GSMArena.com

Nokia, at its best, offered an N97, and 6 months after an N97 mini.
N97 screen size : 3.2" (2009)

Samsung Galaxy S phones all come with a mini version:
S3 mini screen size : 4"
S4 mini screen size : 4.3"
S5 mini screen size : 4,5" (2014)
S6 mini screen size : ??“
S7 mini screen size : 4.6” (rumors)

Sony Compact series:
Z1 compact : 4.3"
Z3 compact : 4.6"
Z4 compact : 4.7"
Z5 compact : 4.6" (2015-10)

Interesting to see that the screen size did reduce between the Z4 and the Z5. Less is better here.

iPhone mainstream series:
4 : 3.5" (2010 ; Steve Jobs died in 2011-10)
5 : 4" (2012-09)
6 : 4.7" (2015-09)
SE : 4" (2016-03)

Still smaller than FP2.
Newer is smaller again.

Apple on Steve Jobs era conducted experimental researchs concluding than the 3.5" will always be the size to be.
Gizmodo (2011) : This Is Why the iPhone’s Screen Will Always Be 3.5 Inches https://gizmodo.com/5847981/this-is-why-the-iphones-screen-will-always-be-35-inches

Touching the upper right corner of the screen on the Galaxy S II using one hand, with its 4.27-inch screen, while you’re walking down the street looking at Google Maps, is extremely difficult and frustrating. I pulled out my iPhone 4 to do a quick test, and it turns out that when you hold the iPhone in your left hand and articulate your thumb, you can reach almost exactly to the other side of the screen.

Other mini series:

  • Motorola DROID mini : 4.2" (2013)
  • HTC One mini 2 : 4.5" (2014-05)
  • OnePlus Mini : 4.6" (rumors)

So phone makers are merely all offering “hand-sized” phones, in addition to bigger and bigger screens presented as mainstream…
They might be making bigger screens just because they miss another improvement to announce. Still, my hands are not growing anymore, and I don’t want to watch videos on my cellphone.

My opinion on this matter is that a good market positionning for an FP2 mini would be 3.5" screen size. (and lets consider 4" max if it’s technically way too difficult to achieve 3.5")

This would address a clear other segment of the market. And a 4" FP3 would be a one-size-fits-all product…

1 Like

@Donsemann Making useless tablets just killed Jolla. I would not advise Fairphone to go towards more toy-products.

Then, from my point of view, once rooted (and so common bugs fixed) I’m happy with the current stability, but maybe using free-software heavily-tested apps from F-Droid (current counter: 64) help in the process. Then, for the bugs I seen, I reported 8 of them directly to upstream developers when it was looking hardware and OS independant.

I have acceptable flickering in low light, or when scrolling.
Acceptable touchscreen craziness (it just needs to be kept clean).

I agree shipments are still taking months once ordered and it seems too long.

But I hope there are people already thinking to the next step of Fairphone, and I’m advocating for this one, as it looks like requiring minimum hardware efforts and merely no software effort at all (providing the FairphoneOSOS will arrive before :wink: and still, SailfishOS2 looks in the way to be ready before !).

With less container modules 4.6" would make sense. But I guess 5" and above allow a bit more wiggle room for modules. Also it would be nice to reuse some parts between the different phones (batteries, camera, connector), so they don’t need to stock more new parts. I still think it’s a drawback that the FP2 cannot use a “standard” cellphone battery from the market.

Can you elaborate on this? I thought FP does not have a official bug tracker? Or are you talking of Google as upstream?

1 Like

I didn’t know Jolla was dead. I though they had good success with their tablets. In the long run I do agree with you that there should be a smaller maybe cheaper option of FP available. I’m not an engineer but maybe designing a FP3 and a FP3mini at the same time isn’t such a bad idea. Important to keep the good stuff like double sim and exchangeable parts though. And a good idea to stick with phones.

My last phone was an iPhone 4S. The larger size took a little getting used to. But that was really the least problematic. The smaller sized phone was better for making calls and handling on the run. The larger is better for browsing the net and reading newspapers online. I guess it’s a personal preference what you like and it would be nice to have the choice.

I guess it will be hard to use the same modules (that have to be the same size) in a mini-version of a FP.

1 Like

About the possibility of a mini version of the FP2: I’m quite sure it will never happen.

Last Thursday I was at an event in Vienna where a study on “How fair is the Fairphone” was presented. Tina was there too and talked about the Fairphone and answered some questions from the audience. I’ll repeat some points she made that - in my opinion - make a FP2 mini a very low probability:

  • The FP2 was designed from the inside out. They first planned what comes into the Fairphone (Minerals, Modularity, dual SIM, …) without thinking about the design and size of the phone. So the size just happened.
  • The design/patents… cost a lot. I don’t remember the exact sum but in was on the scale of millions. Tina said even slight design changes and new modules would again cost a lot and they don’t have that kind of money just laying around. Atm there are plans for a new camera module but no other changes.
  • The cost of the FP2 is a bit higher than comparable phones (although I always wonder how you compare the only fair and modular phone with other phones). The reason for that is not a “fairness bonus” but caused by the small production quantities. My guess in Fairphone won’t create many different versions of their phones but rather try to get the quantities up for the one phone.
15 Likes

@fp1_wo_sw_updates By “upstream” I mean directly to the developpers of the softwares I use:

@Donsemann I was refering this news : Sailfish OS creator Jolla will restructure debt, cut half its workforce https://finance.yahoo.com/news/sailfish-os-creator-jolla-restructure-131828130.html

2 Likes

Regarding screen size : the phone thickness can, more or less, be converted in accessible screen area, as a thin phone allows a grip in a position where the thumb is dominating a bit more the screen.

And, as a matter of completness, the edge width (around the screen) is also an optimisable variable, but no edge means muscles of the thumb are touching the sensitive part of the screen… which must result in erratic movements.

1 Like

Thanks @paulakreuzer for your substantiated answer.

I still hope an FP2 mini will appear.

I bought an FP2 to support the project, this is done.

Now, I’m really not confortable with the fact you must plug it once every two days, constantly having to check this parameter to get actuel services from the device (will it last until tomorow morning ? Until I reach the appointment ? Until the the end of the meeting ?) And using a regular USB port to reload it, the FP2 just spend 10% of its time plugged.

(Not to mention that my cover (also) cracked within the 1st month of use…)

I think most smartphone users plug in their smartphones every overnight. So they only have a problem when their battery lasts less than 18 hours.

I have also seen this effect. On a PC USB port, charging is much slower than with a dedicated charger.

2 Likes

Would it possible to get more info on this? For me this would somehow kill the project. Patents in the scale of millions? For what? Was that a misunderstanding?

Newest iPhone announced yesterday : iPhone SE
An iPhone 6s in the body the iPhone 5s, screen size 4".
Apple is back with 2013 screen sizes…

Source :flag_fr: : http://www.lesnumeriques.com/telephone-portable/apple-iphone-se-p30989/apple-iphone-se-iphone-6s-dans-corps-iphone-5s-a-489-euros-n50853.html

Oh, I found a small screen sized device (3,5") with built-in : « Accelerometer, ambient light and proximity sensors, compass, gyroscope, barometer, thermometer, RFID… » (just as I was suggesting here ).

100% free softwares out of the box, if the box comes in one day (as I was advocating here ).

« The Neo900 project aims to provide a Fremantle (Maemo™ 5) compatible successor to the N900, with a faster CPU, more RAM and an LTE modem. » https://neo900.org/

The main interest of this project is it’s baseband sandboxing design allowing the user to control, for the 1st time, when the baseband works, and what it can reach inside the phone. Continuing those discussions:

And will support Replicant right away among other OSes (as discussed here).

If you consider the N900 case (screen half, keyboard half), the battery and the NeoN mother board as separate modules, it’s even a modular phone :slight_smile: (at least as the so called Puzzle Phone) [edit more detailed modules distinction]

1 Like

To me the “mini” part should also be about reduced functionality. I’d want a very basic phone, i.e. something that makes phone calls and SMS, no camera, no GPS, very few apps (only utility apps like calculator). A touchscreen dumbphone if you will.

So maybe use a few of the existing components and plug them on a small, non-retina screen.

Have you thought about getting a used phone (smartphone or dumbphone)? I think you will not need up-to-date specs on this phone. This will save you money and is more environment-friendly and consumes less resources than making a new phone.

6 Likes

I second the idea of a mini, although it’s obviously much too early now. I would first want the various glitches taken care of, above all being able to phone without problems, having a camera that works an various other problems.

One of the reasons I ordered a FP2 was because I thought it would be the size of the FP1… dumb of me, I know. When I read (after ordering) that it would be a little bigger because “that’s what the market wants” I thought okay, but I didn’t expect such a monster! Previously I had an old iphone (bought second hand) because it was the smallest one I could find used (am in Switzerland where phones are replaced very quickly).

I think the main problem is the modular system. I would not mind at all having a phone that is thicker instead of thinner because it’s more ergonomic, despite “what the market wants”. However, I fear FP will not have the resources to make another modular design for a mini, especially if they cannot find solutions to the numerous problems already existing.

1 Like

If FP keep the same modules, it wourld be possible to create a Fairphone midi, by cuting a bit on the left and right side from the case, were the akku, is so the phone would be a bit shorter, but i guess it would not be enought to call him mini. :smiley:
A funny name could be Fairpone -, miss Fairphone, Fairphone junior. :wink:
I think it could be possible to have three different sizes, with nearly the same modules.
FP jr. (FP2.01), FP2 and FP pro with 7"

Nearly 33% of all active iPhones are models with 4" displays http://www.gsmarena.com/nearly_33_of_all_active_iphones_are_models_with_4_displays-news-16471.php

These numbers confirm that one-third of the active iPhones users are loving their 4” display and aren’t exchanging it for a bigger one. If you add the iPhone 4s and older 3.5" models, we get a number close to 40% of users not using larger model iPhone.

1 Like

Hi,
New here. I was planning to sold my Nexus 5 (which runs Sailfish OS) to buy a FP2. So, I took my Jolla phone back in my small hands. And despite the horrible screen of the Jolla phone, I thought: “Hey, it’s better in my hands than the N5”. As a result, I’m full of doubts regarding the opportunity to buy a FP2. I really want to support the initiative, but 74 mm is really too wide for me.

I think the engineering process and lot of artefacts could be reused from the FP2 to make a FP2 mini. Same style, same frame design (keep it thick, it’s way better to be driven with one hand), same battery, same components, but a 4.5" 720p screen (around 66mm width) would be really really great and I would buy it in minutes, with, of course, the ability to run Sailfish OS.

I too expected the fp2 to be the same size as the fp1, as really don’t like big phones. OK stupid of me, should have looked more closely at specs, but I wanted to support the fair electronics thing.
Am two weeks in to using this brick and finding lots of buggy things… And just too big for my purposes.
But having spent serious cash on this now not sure what to do. Is there a re sale market out there?

1 Like