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Fairphone 3 - Interview of Bas from FrAndroid

Or would it, really?
As we all can do no more than speculate, we have no idea if there already is something to announce.
Everything they might be telling now, they will be held accountable for later, even if the development process later shows, that not everything is feasible or something simply proves to be prone to failing.
And in my opinion all announcements now, besides raising expectations, are reducing the impact of the later presentation of the final product.
On that behalf, Apple really shows what marketing can do; their product-presentions being talk of the town all over the world.

My guess is, that anticipation and speculation about the next FP is rather a good thing, as it keeps interest high.

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A post was merged into an existing topic: Keeping your phone longer with a refresh on the inside and out

I do not own a fairphone, but my current phone, an S5 mini on cyanogenmod, is giving me more and more trouble. I always intended to use my phone for much longer, but with the current performance not even being enough to support my keyboard app (SwiftKey) consistently, I’m starting to look for alternatives.
I don’t use my phone for gaming or anything, but I do expect a smooth experience for navigating the web, etc. and I certainly like the availability of almost all apps out there via the play store. I know that more low-end hardware could be used with a different OS, but just try to make e.g. your bank’s closed-source app for secure payments work with that and you see that there are certain drawbacks (in fact, in my case it doesn’t even allow rooted devices).

So I was quite saddened when I heard that FP is thinking of using a low-end SoC for the FP3, maybe in a release schedule alternating between low-end and high-end devices, because I very much doubt that my current phone will last until FP4 (whenever that may be).
This also means that FP has no offer for any customer looking for a mid- to high-end device for at least two years. I thought hard about getting an FP2, but while I’m completely fine with all peripheries, I don’t see the core module and battery as a good choice until 2022 - which is the lifetime I’d want when buying a new phone.

In my opinion, the best way right now would be transparency in communication. FP should state what their roadmap is, as well as which parts of it are safe and which parts aren’t. That way, potential customers, like me, would have at least [I]something[/I] to base their decision on. With other brands, it’s clear that they release a new phone every year, and while I’m glad that FP doesn’t, I’d still like to know what I’m supposed to expect. It would also fit well with the general strategy of transparency.

Judging by the previous posts, it seems like the community is split on whether a cheap phone with low-end hardware or a high-end phone with corresponding prices is to be supported.
With similar overall goals, there’s already Shift phones for the low end market, while there’s only the FP2 in the (former) high end segment. Everybody looking for an ethically produced phone with a lower price tag already has at least one option.
So if it has to be one model only, I’d say it should most definitely be mid- or high-end hardware. Everything about better longevity of such hardware has already been said.

However, with the modular design and the OS sitting on the same module as the CPU and RAM, offering two SoCs sounds like the natural solution to me. Of course, maintaining support for both is pretty much double the cost, too…

I am actually against the restriction of making it compatible with FP2, because that was the first ever attempt at a modular smart phone. There were surely many lessons learned, and it should be allowed to apply those to the FP3. Cross-Generation compatibility might make for a good long-term goal though.

But I want to stress again that I think the most important part is that potential users have enough information to plan when or when not to buy a phone. Even if it is “We don’t know. Probably 2019, but we really don’t know yet.”

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I don’t know by heart what is considered higher-than-low-end nowadays, but isn’t the new Shift 6m(q) rather high end? At least their price for the 6m is 555€ and the regular price of the 6mq will be 777€. Doesn’t sound too low end for me :wink:

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Then my information might have been a bit outdated indeed. I was judging by the 5.x variants, which are what I think to be the more standard size (the leading number is the screen size in inches). They’re typically below 300€. I didn’t even know there were larger variants.
Anyway, I don’t think that changes anything for the necessity of better information on the FP roadmap.

Edit: Now I found the time to check it, and the Shift 6m(q) are not released yet. Given that Shiftphone also isn’t quite on par in terms of fairness and transparency (e.g. lists only Coltan as a focus, but not other minerals), there’s still a niche open for a high end fairphone.

Hmmm…

This was in the latest isue of the newsletter that FP send to supporters which I received 2 days ago

"Psst…something big is happening

This month we’ve been incredibly busy, preparing for… well, it’s a bit of a secret, so we can’t tell you exactly what just yet, but we want you to be the first to know! Sit tight and keep an eye on our newsletter in the coming weeks. We will also be sharing the scoop on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. "

Now, if it is the announcement of the FP3, I would like to know. My FP1’s battery is reaching the end of its life and I have decided to upgrade the phone. If an FP3 is available soon, I would not be happy to have bought an FP2 a day or two before the availability of the FP3 was made public.

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My guess:

  • 60% it’s the release of Android 7 for the FP2 (‘incredibly busy’ fits best for this, ‘big’ fits, but ‘secret’ not so much since it was announced already, but without a fixed date).
  • 20% it’s a project involving the community that I heard rumors about.
  • 15% it’s something else that will surprise me.
  • 4% it’s not a big thing at all like back when I was still using Apple products they once had a countdown to something big on their homepage and then the big reveal was that Beatles albums could now be bought in iTunes (which nobody had known that they couldn’t before).
  • 1% it’s an announcement that the FP3 coming out in the next 3 years.
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Hollow teasing is a common practice, but not very nice.
People waiting for something in particular (disregarding how realistic it may be at this point) will get their hopes up … Fairphone 3, a new core module, a bigger battery, Fairphone entering the US market … you name it.

Welcome to the disappointment lottery, there will be winners :slight_smile: .

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I think it is still no easy decision to provide information about the FP 3 release but it also bugs me since i am using the experimental 4.4.2 version for FP1. It has a lot of minor and semi bugs and i don’t want to make a downgrade since i don’t know which apps will be broken after.

One of my thoughts is that if FP would say now or half a year ago “in mid/end 2019 there’ll be the FP 3” it could cause a huge drop of the FP 2. Tbh who would buy a FP 2 if you know the next generation is coming quite soon. We don’t know how the numbers are but i still hope FP is not in red numbers.

I stil want to believe.

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Another thing that adds to @paulakreuzer s 60% guess: there have been no updates to the FP2’s OS in the last 2-3 months. Although fairphone has proven to provide updates monthly in the past time.
Now unless there is a big part of Fairphone’s Software Development team on vacation for months now i would guess that they are busy with a different project - something like porting Android 7 for FP2…

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Fairphone recently has secured spare parts for the FP2 for at least three years. So if you buy a FP2 now, it will still receive security updates for a long time and if you break it, there will be spare parts available. (Even if Fairphone cannot provide spare parts anymore, the community will step in.)

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Parts as in parts, or parts as in contracts to still get them produced for three years?

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Parts as in ([all {all?} the] essential) parts of parts that they have to store for now and assemble at some point. :wink:

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So I guess it was the 20% -> Fairphone Investment

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wait, 3 years ?
I thought it was announced for the end of 2018

Pro tip: Read complete posts and try to see them in their context :wink: .

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I did but it took me a while to understand what those percentages meant. Now I get that 1% means you really doubt that’s it.

Any news? Or did I get something wrong? Just fund raising?

Any news on what? And what did you get which might be wrong?

Not sure where to add these… but my favourite ‘feature’ for any new fairphone would be a maintenance subscription.

Let me clarify…
I have a FF1, that I bought because it was fair, and repairable, promising a long life for the valuable resources that wend into it’s production. The device is becoming obsolete because more and more apps are no longer available for it’s OS. Otherwise, it’s still working perfectly and to my satisfaction.
The support for the FF1 has been cancelled because of budgetary reasons. I do appreciate that a company needs to be profitable. That calls for a business model that makes long term support profitable. One way to do so imo is to add a maintenance subscription, such that there is recurring budget to cater for maintenance and OS updates.
Given that many FF customers are interested in having a device that stays with them longer than the average smartphone, I do believe many of these will be prepared to subscribe to a maintenance programme and pay a yearly (or monthly) fee to make sure their phone remains repairable and stays up to date for longer. Clearly also this will have an expiry date. I’d hope this can be stretched >8 to 10 years

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