FAIRPHONE 3 and 3+ A13 - Fingerprint sensor update

There is a warning now (sorry only german):

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This is a bit sad. Was very much looking forward to A13. I have got rather long passwords on my security apps, which are ok to type on desktop, but on the phone - only on rare occasions. Can’t type them each time I need a password, etc.
So that means A11 for the time being, hoping there will be a solution - which doesn’t seem likely atm - and eventually buy a new phone once security updates stop … ;(
Well, FP tries at least.

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Does anyone know how do I stop this update popping up? Is disabling ‘automatic system updates’ in developer options enough to stop the nag?

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FP have abandonded A11 so security updates have already stopped unless you are on A13. I think?

Usually that is the case, yes. Most likely there will be no security updates anymore for the A11 branch, except for the PlayStore-updates and apps itself.

So if you want to keep up with security updates - which is very recommended, of course - you most likely have to type the long and complicated passwords :frowning:
Or go with a custom ROM or another phone.

I guess that was the plan. But after the echo now, maybe they will change their mind and support FP11 at least as long as Google is supplying updates.

Did you check already, whether your apps are affected at all:

If FP did run parallel updates for A11 and A13, how would it work? A13 is being pushed again apparently so all OTA updates from now on will be for A13. Could an update for A11 be done by manually downloading a file for example? I’m not optimistic FP will do any more for A11.

It was of course just a wild guess, as I’m not a Fairphone employee and for sure not a part of the development team.

I appreciate your wild guess. As for you not being an employee, I guessed. Well employees don’t engage with this community. Probably not allowed to except to release official statements.

Will there be any fix soon, or do I need to roll back to ansroid 11?

All we know, you can read above.


I had the same issue, had to do a restart before being able to delete the last one


This issue is caused by […] the lack of support from our fingerprint sensor manufacturer.

I really hope that Fairphone can drive the OEM manufacturer to find a solution. I didn’t realize that I have so many applications which now don’t work well anymore. I wish that beta-testers and other nasty commenters in this forum stating the fingerprint is useless or even bad just realize that it is very very handy for many people and it shouldn’t be an underestimated feature of the phone.
The good thing though, is that the apps are very fluid with the Android 13, everything is faster. Fingerprint is the only hickup. Thanks Fairphone to fight programmed obscolescence with continued Android support, keep up the job with your OEM fingerprint sensor vendor.


As a beta-tester . . . . There never was a problem in . . . . importance, it was not a fixable issue.

The worse thing was pushing it without a CLEAR warning that the reader is downgraded.

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You make a fair point, but in the case I give my unlocked smartphone to my kid or my unlocked smartphone gets stolen out my hands it having an additional layer (be it fingerprint or PIN or password) helps with risk mitigation.

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Not working : Enpass, Wise, UBS, La Banque Postale
Working : Lockwise

Apparently, the problem with certification of biometric devices comes from Google.

The Fairphone 3 fingertip reader was certified as Level 3 in Android 11, but Google downgraded this sensor to Level 2 in Android 13. In other words, the smartphone becomes useless because it can no longer be used as before, for many very important transactions even before as every bank, financial, medical, professional applications. I Worse: this biometric level parameter is not known or published anywhere, for any phone. So: even when buying a brand new phone, we are not sure that it is level 3 certified!

The core value of Enpass application (password bank) is the encryption of data files containing passwords. Of course, for the encryption to be done securely, the passphrase must be long and complicated. Without biometrics, we have to type this code by hand each time we need to retrieve a password. It is long, complicated, difficult and error-prone. I have to re-type it several times to get it right.

The solution is, of course, to use a short and simple passphrase, but this is not compatible with the security requirements of such a tool. A simple passphrase means simplification of finding it, therefore - danger of losing all the passwords we have. This is not compatible with the security requirements…

In this situation, I do not know what to do? Change phone? but, how to know the level of certificate of the new telephone?

So, this is an unexpected and unknown problem that has just appeared. It didn’t exist before, nobody knew about it. I don’t think anyone has come up with a solution…

Fairphone 4 is certified 3? What about Fairphone 5 ?


Does it matter, considering Google can downgrade this in software anytime “for reasons”?

Re-evaluate whether to chain processes to the functionality of a fingerprint reader is really such a good idea and pressure App makers which don’t offer alternative means of authentication to fix their obviously broken App design.

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“fix their obviously broken App design”

it is not “broken design”. The fingerprint reader do not comply with certification level 3 requirements. this is a result of series of security tests, not “broken design”.

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If an App needing authentication doesn’t work without a fingerprint reader, I call that broken design, because there might be no such reader, or it might fail reading. Question of simple problem awareness.

We can all agree the current degradation is not a good situation for users and for Fairphone for various reasons, and the collectively desired outcome would be to get the functionality back in Fairphone OS. How realistic that is, we’ll have to see.

I just don’t like the narrative “the phone is near unusable now” to stand alone.
The fingerprint sensor is convenience first and foremost, and convenience is nice to have. But using the feature is a choice, and making Apps requiring it without an alternative (!) is a choice (and a bad one). Plan Bs are not the preferred choices for reasons, but at least they need to be in place to be available when needed.


I agree. Phone is still usable but this upgrade will make life far more awkward for many. Some people don’t use the fingerprint besides on the unlocking screen so they won’t care, but Fairphone have proved (to me) they cannot be trusted as they don’t listen to their BETA testers and roll out updates with known problems without any notification or followup. In the first post on this thread a FP employess stated the roll out had been stopped, yet they started it again with no notification (unless I missed something?).

I paid for a phone that had a fully functional and trusted fingerprint sensor. This Google upgrade removes that trust (as far as banks are concerned) therefore should never have been rolled out OTA and only been offered a download option.