Distinguish 3+ from 3 and back protection? ("bumber" or additional case)

Hey everyone,

I have two questions: How can I distinguish the FP 3+ from the 3? I can’t see anything on its outside that tells me what version it is and also inside it says “Model: Fairphone 3”. Shouldn’t there be a 3+ named there? :wink: And I can only put the camera quality up to 12 MP which means they accidentally sent me a FP3 instead of a 3+, right??

Second question: I’ve been looking for something suitable for quite a while now without any results… I know the back cover is designed to be replaced but it’s so thin I’m afraid that if I let my phone fall to the ground some hardware from its inside will break. Can you recomment any cover/backside protection like a “bumber case” or another back case? I don’t want to have a case that will cover the display as well though so you’ll have to open the case every time you want to use the phone (have seen plenty of these cases so far). I’m using an extra glass to protect the screen already…



Welcome to our community forum :slight_smile:

The “housing” (i.e. the plastic case) of the FP3+ is all opaque black and bears an “engraved”, black FAIRPHONE lettering on the back while the FP3’s is translucent and has FAIRPHONE in white. Both the FP3 camera and the FP3+ camera produce 12 MP photos, but the FP3 one does so from a 12 MP sensor while the FP3+ from a 48 MP sensor.

Regarding your wish to add additional protection, have you seen Fairphone’s own protective cases in black or green for the FP3 and FP3+?


No, because the hardware is the same. The 3 and 3+ are nearly identical from a hardware point of view if you exclude the three new modules (two of which can be installed in the FP3). The biggest difference between 3 and 3+ IMO is the improved amount of recycled plastics and fair materials (which is why you can’t get a 3+ simply by upgrading the cameras :wink:).

Indeed, and if you want more explanations, it was extensively discussed in this topic:

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Hey again,

thank you both for your detailed answers!

Well… I have been confusing the replacement back cover with the back case so I thought there’s not available directly from Fairphone. :slight_smile: But, well… almost 40 €!? For a bit of a piece of plastic? Almost 10% of the price of the complete phone, really!?

That’s not really sustainable, putting such a heavy price-tag on something that should be absolutely included with a Smartphone especially one that says that sustainability (no matter if for humans or nature) is the most important thing. I mean: How sustainable is it if I drop my phone one time and then I’ll have to get all kinds of replacement parts for it because its back wasn’t properly protected by default??

I’ve read here that the fp3 comes with a bumber: (Looking for) FP3 Bumper - Well… why not the more expensive version of it!? :smiley: So I’ll basically have to pay 510 € for the phone (instead of the advertised 470 €…). That makes me preeetty angry and most of all disappointed at the moment.

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I can only agree with you. I feel the same, does not feel fair to customers. The same price is with the charger. If you need one you need to add €40 to the price again, which makes the total price €550.
Please don’t make faiphone a customer trap like with Iphones of Samsung (which asks €280 for a screen replacement)

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Well, I don’t think, that you really can make such a comparison. (Of course, I know, you can; but it’s not exactly sensible.)

The kind of policy Fairphone is following is centered on reducing waste and not on ripping off customers. When you order the phone you do know, that it comes without a charger, since you most likely have more than one at home. If you don’t, you can order one from Fairphone or buy one locally or shop with alibaba, amazon and whatnot. There is no obligation to buy one at Fairphone.
And they don’t make it a necessity to buy a new charger by changing the plug-standard. If you have a charger, but need a USB-C cable, you can buy just this.
So, it’s all about waste reduction. I do have lot’s of chargers already; tablet, navigation, phone all came with one. What good would it be to have another one lying around?

The same goes for the cover.
From what manufacturer do you get a phone with a cover included?
You just assume, that it is prone to breaking. I am not sure, that this is the case.
Most likely it could have been a problem with the FP3 translucent cover; therefore you got a bumper included.
The not translucen materials usually are more sturdy and do not really break that easy.
So, it’s just a feeling, that the phone could break easily (cover and modules) and this makes you angry? I would not only feel for you, but stand beside you, if your phone would have been broken from a small drop to the floor and you would be angry. But so far, I haven’t read such a thing in this forum.
And including a protective cover would be a waste as well.
Just browse this forum and you will find so many desires for covers:

  • Some want sleeves, others prefer flip-covers
  • Some want leather, others wood, cork, felt or …
  • Some want a belt clip others don’t
  • Some want it black, others green, red …

There is not “the one cover” for all.
Therefore selling the phone with a cover included would still make many people buy another cover, that suits their needs/desires more. Result: useless covers putting on dust in drawers or being recyled. Selling them is hardly an option, when everyone has got one with the phone.

That’s, what Fairphone is about.
And they are really open about it. You can get a protective cover from any online-platform.
If you e.g. buy a sleeve cover Mitch 14 from feuerwear, which is kind of in line with Fairphone for recycling old fire hoses, this comes at 38.02 € as well.
So the cover by Fairphone does not look that expensive anymore.


Thanks a lot for your detailed reply.

D’oh! I confused the back protector with the replaceable back cover and, thus, thought that there is no extra protection cover available coming from Fairphone. :wink:

Well, yes @BertG, that’s true: To me it only feels like the back cover won’t protect the inside from (heavy) falls. But I haven’t read anything about it yet… Since it’s pretty standard that you can buy protectors and that even the producer of this smartphone is offering one in its official shop makes me sceptical that the inside can’t be (easily?!) broken… :wink:

The individual preferences concerning a cover are a good point as well. But Fairphone have made this decision for its costumers already by offering only one type of cover (okay, they produce it in two colours…), haven’t they? So this isn’t a valid argument any more for the heavy price tag of a simple product made of plastic. Especially because there are only two types available the manufacturing count is almost as high as possible and, thus, the cover should be pretty cheap, shouldn’t it? They don’t have to send everyone a cover coming with the phone, okay, but THIS price? O_o

Anyways, after using the FP3+ for a few days now I’m already experiencing quite more serious problems: Since day one the back camera has been only producing a flickering image while using it (even without shooting a video/taking a picture). Now that I’ve recorded a video with it I can tell you that also the video image is flickering.
The other issue is even more a problem, it makes the phone almost unusable to me: Each time I unlock the screen (no matter whether via gesture or fingerprint) the phone display (what is shown) freezes for several seconds. If I move down the push notification bar it freezes again… This has been the case since today and wasn’t the case two days ago or yesterday, if I remember correctly.

I haven’t changed anything in the config since then however nor installed new apps. And I haven’t been flooding the phone with tons of apps in general, as far as I can say (still >37 GB / 41% free on its internal memory). Almost all the apps I got on my phone have been there since day one because I immediately installed them. Besides Firefox I’m closing all the apps again so the RAM can’t be overloaded either…

Are these just two problems on my particular phone that should not be existing or is the “lower middle class” hardware of the FP3 already as outdated as this so that I can’t use it properly on a daily low-performance (!) basis? (Of course I don’t think that this must be the case…)

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