Decision to abandon FP2

Dear fellow sufferers,

what would be, for you, criteria to abandon your FP2?
Mine becomes slower and slower (no SD card, I emptied my storage and deleted a lot of apps), reboots frequently, the screen freezes after reboots and sometimes also without reboot (manipulating the proximity sensor does not help) but is still working. I’d like to extend its lifetime to the maximum, and in my opinion, 5,5 years (that’s the current lifetime) is far from the longevity I’d expect from a sustainable smartphone. There are even iPhones that live longer.
On the other hand, I frequently travel (thanks to COVID, less than before) and my horror scenario is that FP2 gives up its services when I’m somewhere in Africa…

Those among you who decided to abandon your FP2, what was the reason you finally decided that this is enough?
Those among you who still stick to it, what is, in your opinion, still acceptable, and where would you draw the limit?

Thanks for giving me some feedback!



At the end people and life are so different that each has to make a decision he/she can live with. Reading your explanation I would say get another phone.
End of last year I decided to give up my beloved FP2 mainly because a full battery charge did not even last over the day and I was thick of having to charge before I leave home or being dependent on my powerbank. I ordered the FP4, but while I was waiting for it, I had the possibility to buy a used FP3. I’m happy with the FP3, it feels more reliable, Battery is better, I don’t have reboots, camera is better. Still even the best and most reliable phone can die every second, so probably we need to think about our dependency on such devices. I’m sure nothing will really happen when I’m suddenly without a phone, the world will move on😉


I recognize a lot of these symptoms! I still use my FP2 and will until I can’t take it anymore. Right now, I take it as a very sophisticated way for the phone to encourage me to use it less! If you need your phone to be reliable all the time, it’s a different story. And to be honest, I have been asking the same question and wondering if this was the last year I could use my FP2.
I think that other phones can last longer, but maybe not with the upgrades provided by Fairphone. Are you on Android 10, or 9? I guess that if you go back to Android 7, you will not suffer from so many problems (but you will have security issues…). Thus, it is hard to compare a 5 year-old FP2 with a phone by another brand that still uses A7. But maybe you still are on A7? For me, and reading feedbacks on the forum, problems often occurred after the upgrade to A9 or A10.
Take care!

You are comparing two very different things here: Your specific FP2 with some iPhone. There are also FP2s that are over 6 years old now. Considering that the average phone is changed much earlier than that, I’d say that 5 years+ is already pretty good!
Also, you don’t have to trash your FP2 in case of an upgrade. There are still people who’ll happily take your old device as a whole or as spare parts to keep theirs alive longer. I’d say that’s a lot more sustainable than most other phones will be.

To sum it up: Don’t feel (too) bad about it. Both the FP3 and FP4 are much more solid devices than the FP2 ever was. Chances are that both will work for you if the FP2 did. Then donate or resell your FP2 to someone who can still make use of it.


Dear Chrisse , Yv(es? onne?), mde,
thanks a lot for your thoughts! I did all possible updates (but am at Android 9/ OS 21.12, and the system says that’s the newest), but the problems are old, I had them already before the latest update. I didn’t even mention the battery; I replaced it a year or two ago, but obviously the phone needs recharging once or twice a day and also sometimes freezes when loading. And it switches the loudspeaker off and on when talking. Very annoying.
I have to admit that I use it quite intensively. For example, I often do videoconferences for my work (MS Teams and Webex don’t run on Linux, but on Android…), I do all my banking, purchase train tickets, fly my drone, determine plants, read the newspaper etc. - lots of things even if I don’t use social media. So using less is not really an option.
When comparing my FP2 with some iPhones, I didn’t refer to the average use span of 2 years. People change their iPhones because they want some even newer model. But the iPhone still works. My daughter and my mother both have working iPhones that are older than my FP2, which gnaws at my perception of sustainability.
Finally - I had hoped that modularity meant that I could exchange FP2 with FP4 components. Bottom module doesn’t work, I replace it with a FP2 bottom module. Processor is old, I exchange it with a FP3 processor etc. As I can do with my computer - if the SSD, WiFi card etc. is not performant enough, I can simply replace it with a newer generation model. I sincerely hope one day we will get there one day. But that’s another history.

Well, for the time being I keep it, but might change it before going abroad…

I also briefly considered switching to an FP 4 as my FP2 (5 years 2 months) freezes several times a day (on apps or when unlocking), apps close themselves when in use. On the other hand, there are days, on which runs without problems.

1 Like


I have had an FP 2 for 7 years. I update as soon as Fairphone offers it to me. True, It is slower, it sometimes restarts; some applications close without warning. But apart from that I can still make good calls all over the world, take photos, use the GPS during my hikes… etc… The main drawbacks are that it heats up and the battery drains too quickly .
Nevertheless, I still think to change FP before the end of this year because of the 2 disadvantages. I will probably opt for the FP4.
have a nice day


1 Like

An iPhone is in fact quite durable as Apple offers upgrades for many years. I know someone who uses an iPhone 6 (production started in December 2014), but the phone is not supported since last year. The iPhone 6s on the other hand is still supported. The iPhone 6 of the person I know is very slow. Slower than my FP2. If you don’t mind Apple’s ecosystem, I think than buying a second hand iPhone is a good solution for many people.
The main problem, as you write, is people wanting to change phone every 2 years. Or the price/difficulty to get it repaired (which may change after Apple’s announcements).

I think that Fairphone has achieved something important with fair mining and that they are achieving something important with the use of recycled materials (FP3 and FP4). I would also have liked the phone to be modular in the way you describe it, but it is close to impossible on a commercial scale as phones have different characteristics than computers (some people have been talking about it on this forum). All in all, Fairphone has helped, and is still helping, the industry to move forward, which is great!


Hi Eva,

I feel your pain! I too am a fellow sufferer who is looking to ditch the FP2. I love the ethos of FP more than the products, I think. I have had problems on and off since I got it in 2017, and was disappointed with the camera immediately. There’s always been something that has caused me frustration, be it not being able to hear people on calls, or they can’t hear me, photos, freezing, settings re-setting themselves, now it’s the screen and apps that I’m having trouble with (and cause of me logging in today!)

While the forum has been helpful, I think it is advantageous to have technological knowledge, which I don’t; I get asked questions of me to help diagnose the problems, but I often don’t understand what is being asked of me!

I need a reliable phone and cannot chance keeping the FP2. I thought it was going to be amazing when I got it as it promised to be real competition to other smart phones at that time but there was some disappointment immediately. This makes me nervous about getting a FP3 or 4. Also, I simply cannot afford either of those. In addition to this, I haven’t been able to find if it is possible to recycle the handset I’ve got or trade it in with FP, which strikes me as odd given their environmental ethos.

I am now looking at getting a refurbished phone from a high street seller, and although I feel a little bit of my soul is dying, I can’t see an alternative.

Regarding the reliable phone situation I can understand where you are coming from. After 8 years of use I’ve upgraded from a Nexus 5, which was released in 2013, to a FP4. While the Nexus 5 and the FP2 are two different phones, hardware wise they are quite similar.
When the N5 was released back in 2013 it wasn’t quite high end, but it was still a very, very good phone. The FP2 released more than 2 years later, in December 2015. Same amount of RAM and basically the same processor, the hardware was basically already 2 years old at this point.

This is a problem FP has faced since day 1. Building top notch components is way more expensive and resource intensive than building older (i.e. one/two year old) hardware. The production process cheapens as the manufacturers become more experienced and the yield of good CPUs increases. That is exactly what you want if you are FP, but also leads to underspecced phones compared to the competition. Combined with the fact that FP sold the FP2 up until early 2019 that means that some customers basically bought 5 to 6 year old phone hardware which, to be quite honest, just sucks. Phone hardware was still getting better at a somewhat decent pace during the early/middle years of the last decade, which didn’t help their case. I’m glad FP seems to be decreasing the time span between hardware releases.

This issue seems to decrease with time. You might have noticed, that old desktop PCs are still perfectly useable (if one upgrades to SSD storage). My dad is running an office PC back from 2011(?) that does everything he wants just fine. In recent years phones have stalemated somewhat as well, it is not unlikely that the time frame phones will remain useable will increase and FP is getting better at sourcing more recent components for its phones.

The first FPs were maybe a bit ahead of their time :slight_smile:

For the same reason I wouldn’t recommend getting a new FP3 at this point, unless one really knows, what they want and understands, that the SoC used in the FP3 is a mid class from mid 2018, so close to four years old as well.

Getting a refurbished phone is a great alternative, hope that wall of texts sheds some light on the situation :slight_smile:


Dear SpookyCat and CransNeighbour,

I am really amazed at the number and quality of responses I get here, and I hope I don’t neglect anyone who takes the time to write a contribution.
For example, I didn’t know that FP always follows development in the smartphone sector with some years of delay. I consulted product comparison sites before buying, where Fairphones are generally listed as middle class smartphones with outstanding points for sustainability and fair trade. I don’t have any problem that my phone is not up to date, if it keeps pace with the development of apps and is not overcharged by the processing/ capacity requirements of the new apps.
I also purchased refurbished brand phones for my children because they don’t want to put up with Fairphone’s “backwardness” (not knowing that it is backwardness, they simply say low performance/ bad quality), and for my boyfriend, who is also less patient with hardware deficiencies than myself, we looked at sustainability indices and found that Nokia scored quite well (There is a big discussion on boycotting GAFAM in the family).

Anyway, if the development goes in the direction of a slowdown, then maybe it is not such a bad idea to keep FP2 until something more sustainable appears at the horizon. FP4 has a 5 year warranty, but I want more…not warranty, but repairability and upgradability.


That still holds true. A high end SoC in 2013 was still a decent choice for a mid class device in 2015.

Glad my post didn’t come across as too aggressive :slight_smile:

1 Like

Thanks for your super informative reply; it didn’t come across as being aggressive to me at all :slight_smile: Thanks @Constantinopolitana for raising the issue and the experiences you’ve had too as they’ve helped me make a decision.

I will look at alternatives for the interim, and when my circumstances change in the next couple of years I’ll revisit the idea of a new FP. I’ll keep my FP2 as it is functional, just not reliable.

Hmm… I’m one of these crazy people :slight_smile: I’m probably an idealist, wanting to prove having a 5 year old smartphone is perfectly feasible :wink: It was my first smartphone and so I never experienced something much better, so I’m living fine.

I’d answer to the original question by measuring the frustration one gets when using the phone. If ever the phone frustrates you a lot because of the problems, then change. For example, as long as my phone doesn’t have too many reboots a day (I accept one a day and otherwise I get frustrated), then it’s fine for me. I just hate losing ten minutes of writing a message. But then, I just think it teaches me patience, and I don’t have a desperate need of my phone :slight_smile:
As said higher, I think that’s very personal. Just don’t feel too guilty, I could also tell you of a family member who used an iPhone for more than 8 years. But that’s because she handled it really with a lot of care, and perhaps also because she was lucky.
So in my case I intend to get a refurbished FP4 next year when FP5 gets out, even though my FP2 would then only be 4 years old (this is probably already twice more than the average), but then it was refurbished. In your case, you might want to get a refurbished FP3, it’ll be much more sturdy, and then you don’t feel quite as much guilty if you replace it not too long after because someone used it before.


I think you’ve had it as far as the FP2 support is concerned (from Fairphone anyway) but I do very much agree with your sentiments. For the future, it would be good if the design bods came up with a new model where everything including the enclosed mainboard could be upgraded when required. Or at least keep to the same chassis footprint for 6 years. That would truly be sustainable as you’d only have replace things you needed to replace and not before they need replacing. Before shooting me down in flames, allow me my dreams :wink:

I nearly bought a FP2 but couldn’t find any documentation saying it had a headphone socket, so I didn’t. I’m sorry to read of your FP2 troubles nevertheless. Recently, my FP3 has started to freeze BUT but so far it unfreezes when I switch off the screen then log in again. Probably a Google Chrome flaw rather than Fairphone.

As far 5 year guarantee on the FP4 goes, is it likely anyone will be able to claim on it after say 3 years? From what I can tell from some of the FP3 posts here, water ingress frequently causes the warranty to be deemed null and void even though user claims phone has not been dunked. I suspect pocket perspiration over a prolonged period is enough to do damage or at least set the moisture sensors off. I’m not having a go at Fairphone for this as this is a common industry practice. I’m just saying that as I’m not super fit and do perspire (moreso in Summer months), the length of warranty would not enter into the equation for me. I’m hoping I like the FP5 (when it comes out), I’ll buy it if I do, I won’t if I don’t. Sadly the FP4 is of no use to me. I guess that makes me a FP fair weather supporter!

Hello Eva

  • Happy to see that you handle it for 5.5 years
  • Sad that FP2 isn’t able to exceed 6 years lifetime : my case. Main issues : battery drains - sometimes I can’t use more than 6 hours in normal usage - 8 hours when forcing ‘plane’ mode by period , battery changed 2 times but also permanent reboots & instability which are becoming critical when I need to show QR code for train ticket or COVID-19 vaccine sanitary pass :frowning: All that despite swap on /e/ lineage OS 1 year and 1/2 ago ( which does fix some parts of the issues … but not all )
    I very recently decided to choose another FairPhone ( 3+ ) , my wife and children complaining that I’m crazy since cost is high in regards of iPhone refurbished on BackMarket which are reaching 5 years lifetime actually , with minor issues in their cases … and with sustaining approach guidance since 2017. But let’s say that I’m stupid and docile client :wink:
1 Like

But remind them, there’s no other option if you consider fair trade as the basis of trade and commerce.

Far from being docile you are actually taking a stance which most won’t do largely due to cost.

All the best

Dear Amoun, Chopino, Alex, Spooky Cat and TW8Punk,

thanks again for your detailed and friendly responses. Very much appreciated.
I think there is some part of stubbornness in this insistence (mine, yours, ours) to continue using an old, increasingly unreliable appliance, instead of giving up and taking the mainstream approach,
I sincerely don’t think it is a cost issue. Repairing and maintaining the FP2 is not really costly. My girl had her iPhone screen replaced, THAT is costly. I purchased my screen and replaced it myself. But coping with its various backfalls and breakdowns is somehow trying. Mine freezes several times a day, the battery never makes it for a day long; if I am in videoconference, the phone is connected to a socket but still the battery gets drained,
Obviously my children and boyfriend also continue preaching about throwing away the FP2 and purchase a “real phone”. I suppose without their nagging I’d have done so long ago.

@Chopino: You are Belgian? I have exactly the same issues with the QR code for train & COVID sanitary pass. I tell the controller that my phone is old and capricious, and if he comes back in 5 minutes, it will probably have loaded the ticket (now no more sanitary pass required…). And generally they smile and accept the explanation.

I wish you a belated Happy Easter!


and TW8punk: Yes, the FP2 has a headphone socket!

Yes that is a bind. Luckily I’m only 18 months into an FP3+ lets see how I fare in another 4 years with it.