Can we please have more openness about the touch screen bug?

Just to add my 2 cents: I have to fully agree with Michel. The point is not whether an issue is hardware or software related, if it affects all or some / many phones, if there are workarounds or whatever.
The point is (lack of) public, open, honest communication. I was expecting some issues with a phone developed by such a small company. But I also expected them to be very open about it. Fairphone calls us their community but more or less treats us like any big corporation treats its customers.
I have crowdfunded other projects which had huge delays in development and major issues in the shipped product. But they were very open about it - which in the end made it an excellent experience. Sending a weekly, detailed newsletter is the minimum I expect from a project like Fairphone. Just tell us: Hey, these are the issues we are aware of, possibly caused by this or that, this is what we are currently doing about it, this is what we don’t know yet, these are the next steps, this is the estimated timeline. And by the way, we are sorry about that and thank you for being patient.

Be. More. Open.

Fairphone is not Samsung or Apple with corporate communication bla bla and “let’s better say nothing so we don’t say anything wrong” policies. We all make mistakes, but being honest and open about them keeps everyone happy.


This post is right on the money. I have exactly the same problem, the same frustrations, the same hopefulness that FP will succeed. However, if this is only affecting a small number of users then that sounds like a hardware issue to me, and I think I’ll now be looking to get my FP2 replaced.

“Be. More. Open.” Simple and true!

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I’m absolutely with you asking for more openness and regular information regarding this (and other!) bugs. On the other hand I’m very well aware (from my own professional experience in a big company) that frequent and detailed communication takes a lot of time - not only for the communication guys (@Douwe, in this case), but also for the technical experts, who are supposed to work on solutions. Time, that is then missing for problem analysis and solution development. Especially for technicians (if the think like me) it might feel more important to get things fixed than to explain why it isn’t working or when it will be ok.

Please don’t get me wrong: requesting good, frequent and open communication is absolutely appropriate and I can also understand the frustration (I still remember how upset I was when I learned that the FP2 came unrooted w/o an official way to root).
But let’s also have some patience with the Fairphoners - I’m sure they’re having a hard time doing what they can and were a bit overrun by the issues.

Have a good night,


No reply from support yet. But I’ll give it a week before chasing them on the phone. I am curious though if anyone else has gotten a reply to requests for replacements?

As a side note, I must say I wish the random reboot bug happened a bit more often to me, as my phone also keeps dropping its internet connection several times a day so that neither mobile data nor wifi will work until you reboot it. And the ghost touches also seem to go away very briefly after a reboot.

Perhaps making the device reboot itself after x minutes of inactivity could be one of the Fairphone-specific tweaks to the Android distro in the next update? I am actually only half-kidding here, as it would no doubt improve my experience which is currently at rock bottom.

Actually, I have (for this - different - touchscreen issue) - but only after calling the support hotline.

After my call I almost directly (i.e. a few hours later) I got the instructions on how to request a repair. The repair request was approved within less than two days (from which at least half the time they had to wait for feedback from me). I need to turn in the phone to the repair center, it will be picked up tomorrow (sniff…).

I absolutely encourage you to call support via phone in case of hardware issues, they were very friendly and helpful (in my case and what I heard from others).


I agree with the open communication, but I have just spoken to the very helpfull helpdesk (very positive experience) and they said a major software update is scheduled for Monday. The update is mainly focused on the issue that is described here. Fingers crossed!!


A working community needs more input to be a good ecosystem for a company IMHO. So I hope they can achieve the manpower to be able to start working towards a better communication and information flow.

That is exactly what I’m talking about! It is great that they told you that, but why not just announce it publicly to everyone? We are all waiting for an update and mostly left in the dark about what they are working on and what causes the delays.

On the issue of “communication takes a lot of time”: Yes and no. Yes, compiling a weekly status update might take a few hours. But keeping your community up-to-date will most likely reduce the number of support requests for well-known issues.

Just as an example: There is still absolutely no public statement from Fairphone about the Bluetooth audio issue. Because of that, many people troubled by that problem contact support. They will reply (after a few weeks) that they are aware of it and working on it. How is that helpful to anyone?

Looking at other projects, I just recently received an email update from another project / product which I backed / bought. They explained their timeline of planned software updates: Version x will be released next week and will address issues a, b and c; version y is expected in May and will improve d, e, f and g; and for early summer we are working on features h and i. That is open communication like it should be!

I think they got bitten a couple of times by things not working out as planned, and people getting upset that they ‘promised’ something they then didn’t deliver. I get the impression they’re currently trying to balance a number of things: the amount of work that goes into communicating versus that that goes into fixing things, but also the balance between updating often and getting it wrong, or less often but have more reliable information. See also this discussion for the latter, and especially the post linked below. I’m not saying this applies 100% to the touch screen issue, I’m just contributing my understanding of the current communication strategy that Fairphone appears to be using.

Sadly this is not true. We are still testing the update and it is very highly unlikely it will be released coming Monday. Sorry.
I’ll ask the support team how and why they thought the update would already be released.

Indeed. That is why we started writing more how-to’s blog posts and an explainer about the issue with spare parts. The last few weeks we compiled a list of the most most asked questions on social media, the forum and in tickets to the support team and these blogs are a direct reaction to that.

That still leaves open a lot of other unanswered questions and I hope we can address those in the coming weeks.

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So finally there are some comments from the Fairphone team in this thread. And yet not a single word is said about the actual question that initiated it.

The Fairphone2 is still available for order on the site now, and we have no idea how many of these next batches of phones are broken in the same way. I really did want to be a keen evangelist of this phone, but the longer this goes on the more I feel us early backers have a duty to warn keen people to look beyond the rosy facade here. No matter how fair the production of the FP2 may be, it is really not fair to new potential buyers to pretend things are fine and that they will get a working phone delivered.

It really bothers me how the current site gives the impression that everything is fine with the FP2. At least we who crowdsourced it were aware that we were taking a big gamble with our money when backing the project, and knew we couldn’t be sure if it would sink or swim. But now that the phones are out there, the current state of things should be communicated with a big disclaimer about what to expect.

Many who would like a Fair Trade phone probably have a way tighter budget than I do, and I think it is important to be honest here and let these people know that - in contrast to what the site is telling them - they are not really buying a working phone with their money, but a buggy test kit with almost as uncertain a future as back in September.

There is more than one way to contribute to the fair trade fair goals, and my recommendation to anyone considering the FP2 would be to instead buy an unfair phone that actually works, and invest the money they save into some charities that promote Fair Trade standards in the world. At least for now.


So I am the lucky one with the only working FP2 :laughing:.


Evidently not - but then that’ the entire point. Almost 2 months after the phones were delivered we still have not been told anything about how big a % of the phones are affected (it was even news to me it wasn’t all of them), what the plan to fix the affected phones is, and whether the next batch of phones being marketed and sold could also be affected or not.

And all this from an business that claims to be “open” and “transparent”. If you don’t see a problem with this, then I don’t know where to start.


Sorry for the sarcasm. But the FP2 is definitely not a “buggy test kit”. And of cause it is much easier to be enthusiastic about the FairPhone project with a working phone.

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I am sorry I have no better news for you. The reason is I currently do not have information that is reliable and sure enough to share. But you can rest assured that this problem is known and we are working hard on a solution.

As far as I understand it now, and as you can read in this thread, it is hard to track down what causes which problems. Not all FP2’s have these issues and the ones that do don’t have all exactly the same issues.

But we’re committed to provide people a working Fairphone and once we are able to isolate the root of these issues and come up with a working solution, those who are affected will be helped.



Regular, public up-to-date information from Fairphone could help reduce such speculation, rumors and hearsay. Just sayin’.

I’m sorry, but none of the information you referred to is related to the many very real issues troubling FP2 users who depend on a reliable phone every day. “Reducing your screen brightness will make your battery last longer”, “this is how you download an app from the Play Store”… I don’t even know how to comment on that.

Sorry to disappoint you, but currently no one has a fully working FP2. Of course not every FP2 has manufacturing defects. But there are many systematic bugs which affect every single FP2 (Bluetooth audio issues, swapped stereo channels on headphone connector, notification LED not working, just to name a few). You might not notice these bugs if you don’t use the affected features or you just might not care about them. That’s great, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t there. And they are so obvious that it’s almost embarrassing.

I’m sure your team is working really hard on fixing these bugs and I know everyone appreciates that. So just let us participate in your efforts! What are you working on? What might be possible causes and solutions? Sure, sometimes it might turn out that you were wrong later, but so what? Sure, most / all of you aren’t native English speakers (neither are most of us, neither am I) and you will make mistakes when sending off-the-cuff updates. But who cares? That’s authentic, that is what distinguishes communicating with customers from interacting with a community.

For me, in the current state the FP2 works well enough for daily use and I can somehow work around most of the bugs. But I definitely can not recommend getting one at this time. Seeing that Fairphone now starts distributing a phone which is basically work in progress through network operators really makes me worried. And that is sad because I still support the idea and would love getting more people interested in a fair phone!


I appreciate your response. But as others have already pointed out, it is disappointing that nothing beyond the standard corporate we-know-about-it-and-are-working on it cliche is said. And no matter how you justify it, a keep-silent-about-anything-uncertain policy is pretty much the total opposite of what transparency means. So many of us are rightly baffled by this being the media policy of choice for a project that marketed transparency as one of its goals besides the core one of Fair Trade.

The people on this forum have already bought into the project by funding this device, and you cannot share what is known so far (reliable or not) about the major problems, because… we’ll freak and get nasty? Start accusing you of over-promising? I think the community has been incredibly patient and understanding and can’t see why we can’t be told what is known so far about what the issue could (and more importantly, what has been ruled out). Exactly what is the fear here?


Seeing that Fairphone now starts distributing a phone which is basically work in progress through network operators really makes me worried.

Spot-on. I wonder if Fairphone realise how much damage to their brand a more mainstream sale of the FP2 could cause at this stage.

Had this been any other phone brand I would have sent it back with a refund request minutes after unpacking it from the box. The fact that it was a work-in-progress-for-a-good-cause has made me tolerate the state of things, but I doubt a wider audience, who primarily want a smartphone that works, will be as forgiving.


Ok, so it actually seems that ghost touches are not entirely unheard of on other smartphones and tablets:

I might have a go at actually opening the phone to see if bad isolation could be the reason… has anyone else had a look?

Using “Developer Options”->“Show Touches” is a good debugging tool for this issue, as swiping my finger horizontally will show the extreme noise in where the software thinks the pointer is located. Can’t help thinking that adding some basic noise filter in software could at least minimise the noise.

Of course, one wishes we didn’t actually have to speculate about possible causes of this issue that could already be known to definitely be true/false…