Unfortunately, my Fairphone has been a big illusion…
I ordered my FP2 in March and received it in May. It crashed in the first week and I had to remove the battery to reboot it. From that time, it kept om crashing, more and more often.
One month ago, I noticed that the microphone is often not working. A week later, the screen stopped working. I can’t use my Fairphone anymore and had to return to my old iPhone.
I tried to contact the customer service in June and when the screen stopped working, both times without any reaction from Fairphone. Today, finally, after a phone call, I received a link to send my phone back.
Mainly due to the bad costumer service, I decided not to use the phone anymore. I am really disappointed, but I need a product that I can use instead of a product that breaks whilst it is still brand new. I thought this company would have good service, but unfortunately this is not true. I would never recommend to anyone to buy this phone!
Too bad, because the idea of a fairtrade phone is so good…
Unfortunately electronic devices always have a certain rate of items that have faults and won’t work - even when brand new. This is an unsatisfying waste of resources, but I guess with the little money we are willing to pay for high-tech devices that have to be up to date, we - as customers - are also partly responsible for this situation (since there is neither time nor money for thorough testing and development).
In any case, within the European Union you always have a warranty, so you could have gotten your device fixed by Fairphone. I can assure that by design the phone just works perfectly fine
Fairphone is of course a small company with around 50 employees, so they cannot be as flexible as the big corporations. My experience though is that once you’re able to get in contact with the team, they are very friendly and helpful.
Well, good luck with your other phone, hopefully you will have less problems with it Let’s hope Fairphone will be successful with their mission that soon also other producers will start to take more care about where they get their resources from and about the conditions for the employees in the production chain.
The overall desperate situation about FP support is confirmed by the head of support team, Michiel Stoop. Maybe you are interested in a session with him called AMA-with-Michiel-Stoop. (see my link below) . I asked him several time what the main reason e.g. damage to most returned FP2 devices over more than half a year actually was. Although I asked more than once I got no answer. Instead he repeatedly talked around the bush as the english say.
Follow the arrow right to see Michiels answer before to the same question and scroll down to his repeated answer to a repeated question about in-warranty returned devices - he was not able to answer .
If you search that topic for other crucial questions and answers about damaged devices to be returned you only find less than one hand full (3 as far as I remember). Especially one single person that asked about some more statistics got no answer.
One remedy given here in the same way as Michiel Stoop does is the “doubling of the support team staff”. If you find Mr Stoops statement from the blog referenced above you find only 5 additional persons to a staff of only 8 people since january. Again that is a broad view before the other 8 should now have their first time holiday in this year and maybe cannot fully introduce the new support members.
One statement from Michiel I will never forget in the AMA from thursday: Asked what is different between FP customers maybe compared to others company’s customers he answered: FP customers are soo patient with problems and issues of their phones. This statement I would describe a smoking-gun.
In any other phone company we would blame this inadeqacy on the intention of making money e.g. profit from a narrowed support team equipment. No, no, I don’t think with FP is the same. Also, I would never blame the members of the support team including Michiel who can’t help not giving inside infos asked for at the AMA session. No it is of course the CEO management that didnot handle their own support in a professional way. Nobody talks about why this happened more than half a year. Best kept secret.
My guess ? Simple enough: Like many here on the forum they simply exaggerate their opinions about their own product. Like this way: Due to it’s modularity design the FP2 should need less not more support and service. Management is all the same in the world and can be really stubborn. Especially when they think they have an advantage above other phone producers given a moral statement with fair tradement about its product.
Yes, I can’t help and already said it right away: I think the fair trade and all other honourable - and successfull - achievement of this product is on the expense of the support team. We will see how long this keep on going.
Lidwien, can you explain why support is swamped after the AMA? I was not able to and I don’t really understood @anon48893843. He told me he had statistics, but he can’t tell us what was going on?
I think that’s pretty fishy. I’m not paranoid and I don’t think I’m being lied to all the time. But why not share for what reasons people were sending in their phones/calling support most of the time?
I could really use this info for helping others … and myself. The forum could write better guides. And it would help me, because I would like to buy a FP2, but I don’t want to have the FP1 experience ever again.
Part of the FP1 experience is the feeling that the phone has issues, but the “project” is not talking about them for a long time. Once more and more people post, and even the impulse shopper show up here to complain, the company posts a blog post that in very nice words … does not say anything. That happened with the FP1 and I see it happening with the FP2 again. I don’t understand why a project that wants to be fair to workers and consumers cannot talk about problems and that they do in general a bit more openly.
This is not what I said. I wrote "Lidwien, can you explain why support is swamped after the AMA? "
I was trying to say:
Lidwien, has the AMA helped you understanding the main reasons why the support team is having ongoing issues?
For me this is an answer that does not answer anything. "The complexity of our systems and processes made it difficult to keep up." But the only message it took home is: Not because FP2 is a bad product
My opinion on this is:
When I bought the FP1 during the crowdfunding period I knew I was buying a phone that was new in the markt made by a small company. So I knew there was even a possibility that I would never get a phone. I was a happy user of the FP1 and so is my friend how is now using my former FP1
When I bought the FP2 during the crowdfunding period I knew I was buying a phone that was new in the markt made by a small company. A phone more complex than the FP1 (so complex that Google didn’t succeed in making a modularity phoen), completely new design, never tested in a way a big company could do. And yes I knew again that buying by a small company could have it’s problems. But I somehow assumed that the people buying a FP2 would be a the same ‘material’ as the FP1 buyers. Namely people who are willing to help each other in a way I know happings in the Linux world. So by learning from each other, there’s less support needed. That’s why the forum is for me a part of the Fairphone.
And yes, they have underestimated the impact of the FP2 on the support team. Did Fairphone do something
to improve support? They tried but didn’t succeed at first. Now I believe things to be slowly getting better.
As the FP2 is such a different phone from the FP1, support could hardly learn from the experience from the FP1. It is sad but reality.
And I am still fully supporting Fairphone, because they try to be fair as possible. Which is far more then could be said of other phonecompanies.
This sounds like you joined a cult. I also don’t need a perfect fair phone, I knew what I was in for as well. But I want answers related to QA and issues and I also want support from Fairphone for the users that care about the code, want to help others and want to learn more about how the phone-industrial-complex works. That’s all.