I don’t think that the Nougat firmware by Fairphone will be finished tomorrow. When the Nougat firmware is shortly before completion, we will probably know if Nougat has such problems. If not, we have a fast finish then. If yes, Fairphone could hold back the upgrade until Google releases a solution (hoping that this solution has no breaking changes).
I only ask: How long? You don’t only have to look at security updates but also on app compatibility. I think Lollipop will be still good in the rest of 2016 and the first half of 2017. But then, we have to look at these both issues.
Marshmallow and Nougat provide and integrated app permissions manager, what is a great thing, much more efficient that an useless “Privacy impact” app.
The energy management is also much better in Marshmallow and Nougat.
A maintained Lollipop is nice, but planned development and transparency too.
We all know that the Fairphone ressources are limited.
In this case why they not help community to port alternative OS like Cyanogenmod or really open their sources code to contribution?
They are a lot a questions waiting Fairphone answers (binary blobs, legacy, source code management and openess, patch submission,…).
So so, a lot of people want (bad or good) news from the Fairphone 2 team.
How can we ask them a software roadmap ?
We asked yet unfortunatly Fairphone dont want to / cannot communicate about that…
What is a bit disapointing from a fair manufacturer of Android phone.
Or recently on Facebook, Fairphone said :
We currently do not have plans to have Androif N on the Fairphone 2
But they add :
We will get that [Android Marshmallow] on the Fairphone 2, but we can’t say yet when.
Having worked on Firefox OS - which was based on Android - I can tell you that’s a bad idea for a number of reasons. First of all Google has and will always have more resources than Fairphone will be able to muster so playing catch-up means you can end up never finishing a version before the next one comes out. Second you’re dependent on the SoC OEM for support and Qualcomm’s support for Android M is going to be much better tested and more stable than Android N. Lastly Google has been introducing functionality in an incremental way. You need to ensure that functionality works correctly and skipping a version means you’ll have to test it from scratch in the following one if you didn’t manage to finish it in the previous one.
Long story short, skipping a version in general means wasting work and increasing your risks.
edit: Wrong quotation
EDIT August 2018: This information is wrong
The FP2 CAN’T receive Android 7.0 Nougat officially (= with Google services) because Google (= AOSP) dropped support in Android 7.0 Nougat for the msm8974 chipset (which is the Snapdragon 800/801 chipset, which is used in the FP2)
Quote from Myself5 on XDA/Disqus:
If someone here would be able to read the Android Sourcecode, they would know why the Z3 and other msm8974 devices are no longer officially supported.
With 7.0.0, all msm8974 code was removed from AOSP. After all, what you expect is that Sony is supporting a no longer AOSP supported chipset. At what point is that a fair assumption?
Of cause its sad to hear that the Z3 got the N Previews and now is no longer supported, but guess why there was no Preview 4 or 5 either? Probably that was around the time when Google gave the 8974 chipset the boot.
After all, the article is not really well researched in my eyes, and written like its Sonys fault that the 8974 platform is no longer supported. Of cause up to some point it is. But there is also a greater matter, which is not in the hands of Sony at all.
BTW, Sonys Open Devices program will probably find a way sooner or later, its just not something the company can do officially IMO.
And another quote from an XDA article:
Since support for the Vulkan Graphics API is required for a device to pass Google’s Compatibility Test Suite (CTS), any device with a Snapdragon 800/801 will not receive official support for Android Nougat. But since Nougat runs just fine without drivers that support the Vulkan API, you can expect to see unofficial ports for many other MSM8974 devices. The level of functionality of these unofficial ports will widely vary between devices, depending on how open source friendly the device’s hardware is.
So basically a FP Open build would be possible but not one with the Google services included.
The AOSP source of Fairphone is CodeAurora (Qualcomm directly), not Google. Maybe they will support it?
They won’t be able to provide an image with the google services included (as in my previous post) the OS won’t pass Google’s Compatibility Test Suite which requires Vulkan for Android 7.0. So the only hope is, that they create an FP Open image with Android 7.0 (which could take a really long time as the Fairphone software team is much too small to fix all the already existing bugs and get a new version ready)
Oh, I see, the Google chains, err, I meant, Google’s “Compatibility” Test Suite needed for distributing their Google bloat- and spyware,
but thanks @z3ntu for the information!
Wow this is really bad news…
When I bought the Fairphone I was hoping for fast updates to newer versions of Android.
So we can only hope that FP will at least release an FOS that is based on Android 7.
There is still Marshmallow. It’s not FPs fault (okay, they’ve chosen Qualcomm and did not talk about it) but in the end it’s Qualcomm’s fault. They decided that they don’t want to port the bin blob for the graphics drivers on the 801 to the level that Google wants. So it’s dead by software again. I’m not sure how much graphics power is really needed for Android 7. Maybe one could do without. But Android 6 or CyanogenMod 13 (based on Android 6, I think) will be the best OS for most FP2 users in the end.
Hmm, following the discussions about the updates of FP1 and FP2 I’m asking myself if it’s even possible to produce an Android phone with updates over more than some few years…?!
It seems that there are quiet a lot of difficult dependencies…
A real Linux distro (i.e. GNU/Linux), as Ubuntu Touch (and Sailfish OS?) should serve that purpose. Google designed Android with planned obsolescence in mind.
I’m pretty disappointet about the Bad News. I knew that we would have to wait for every big Update and would probably always one year behind the newest Version, but being stuck on Version 6 is fatal. The new features are no big thing, but maybe the Features of Version 8 or 9. And someday Google will stop Delivering Sevurity Patches for Android 6 and maybe Apps will begin to need Android 7 or higher to run.
It’s not directly Fairphones Fault (it is indirectly their Fault because they choose the SoC, but they didn’t know what was going to happen in the Future) but a Phone that should be used and repaired for 5 years and even longer with a totally outdated OS is a Joke.
I was waiting to buy a FP2 because I wanted to check if the monthly Security Updates come fast and regularily, if the Ubuntu Touch and Sailfish OS Ports make Progress and how fast they are going to Release Android 6. But I think under These Circumstances I won’t buy a FP2.
But Even if Sony or Qualcomm don’t do anything, maybe there is a Way for FP? Maybe they Switch to Ubuntu Touch or Sailfish OS officially? Or someone finds a Way to bring Android 7 to Devices that are not being officially supported? Maybe this could make a Android 7 FP Open OS possible at least.
In my Opinion Sailfish OS isn’t a Linux Distro and I’m not sure if Ubuntu Touch is a “real” one.
Here an article for all german folks around: https://www.computerbase.de/2016-08/snapdragon-801-800-fehlender-treiber-koennte-android-7.0-im-weg-stehen/
In a nutshell: It is about the Z3 and that the problem may be the missing driver for the Adreno-330-GPU (same as the Fairphone 2) and not missing support for Vulkan. Furthermore it seems to be only a problem for the 330 GPU, as other phones with a GPU from the 300 series seem to get the Android 7 update (e.g. the General Mobile 4G with Adreno-306-GPU). It seems unclear, if Android-One-Devices (such as the mentioned) doesn’t have to meet all requirements of the android compatibility test suite or if there is still hope for other devices with GPU from the 300 series.
They asked Qualcomm for a statement and will update the article if they get one.
Hope this is readable Have written this in a hurry and english is not my native language.
Well the Fairphone 2 has a Adreno 330 GPU…
My personal opinion is that Fairphone will try to start supporting other OSes at the latest when it turns out that they can’t update Android anymore. If only FP1 would have support for other OSes…
Right, the Fairphone has the same GPU - this is why I posted this Forgot to mention this in my previous post, thanks!
nice. my first android phone after resisting smartphones in general for more than 10 years, was a 99€ cheapshot for ingress that was (unknown to me) obsolete already, now i bought a fp2 and boom 7 weeks later i can send it to the moon, too.
Why? It’s perfectly up-to-date with lollipop, might get MM, and what will happen then time will tell… According to a few articles i read it might even get a version of FP Open OS, as no CTS is necessary.
Don’t panic (just yet )