Speaking of reaching a wider audience: have you tried reaching out to universities? I work at one right now, was offered a company phone, but the Fairphone was not one of the available options. When I suggested it everyone agreed it should be (some of the IT guys even had bought one themselves), and I’m sure that among researchers, in an environment where every other piece of research has to pass an ethical committee, there is wide support for fairer electronics.
No idea if they would fall under the high-end or low-end users though; if anything it’s probably more the third “business users who demand reliability” category that was mentioned.
Also, I bet many universities would love the good PR they could get out of saying they now offer ethical phones to their eimployees.
(I bought one on my own and argued for a better laptop instead, but I digress)
Oh, one more thing: regarding the camera module update mentioned in the interview (and, for that matter, whatever camera ends up in the FP3), please please please support raw files in some form or the other.
I’m already getting pretty good results with the newest verson of Open Camera + Snapseed, but having the raw DNG available would probably be even better - for starters, white balancing a JPG is painful :(.
Electronics Watch engages with public sector buyers, so that’s maybe what you are looking for.
Other than that, in most of the cases public sector buyers have contracts with a mobile operator, which offers a range of business phones to organizations. So the goal would be to encourage mobile operators to take the Fairphone into their portfolio so that it becomes an option for organizations.
I think @Douwe made an excellent summary of all the different minds and expectations potential customers have.
I can get over technical deficiencies when a device is built substantially, meaning that it would be nice to catch up with so many features which e.g. the iPhone is offering today, but certainly I would not want to pay the price of experiencing so many malfunctioning basic features for it…
I would really like to pay at least EUR 100.00 to 150.00 more for better quality. How much more would a device cost when it fails to do the daily job? I am sure people would say: “Oh, a Fairphone costs as much as an outdated iPhone, but cannot offer so many features in comparison!” Then I would respond to them: “Sure, but I have had not a single repair since I bought it, so … when was your iPhone repaired the last time??”
Sorry, but I don’t get your point. What malfunctioning features are you talking about?
Also your last paragraph confuses me. An iPhone might be more expensive, but as you say at the end, that doesn’t guarantee better quality.
To the contrary, I find it rather remarkable that Fairphone as a new company and start up was able to produce two reliable phones already, while iPhone users still need to struggle with planned obsolescence. Beside the reliability of Fairphone another huge advantage is of course that in case something breaks, it would be easily repairable. This is particularly relevant for the display, which apparently many people manage to break. I guess that is something you could add to your arguments with users of other phones (like iphone users, who can’t even change the battery).
Reboots caused by excessively used SoC (combined with battery drain).
Display/Bottom module damages caused by - I believe - poor rigidity of core module (followed by bright spots, dead touch areas, white noise, dead microphones, and interrupted power and data connections).
Proximity sensor failures.
Broken covers (solved).
And all together is what I would think of an unreliable smartphone. Sorry for that…
To be honest, I prefer to avoid to repair a device if it is not necessary to do so. Meaning: It should, no - it must be possible for Fairphone to at least halve the trouble with their next model.
Wow, sorry to hear you experienced all these issues. Sounds like you must have had quite a bad luck with the device you got. In the 1,5 years I have my FP2 I didn’t have any issues, except for the cosmetic problem of the case disintegration.
But well, any manufacturer of electronics has some devices with failures. I guess to reduce that to zero would increase costs substantially, not just by 100 or 150 €.
From my experience with FP1 & FP2 I can only say that the phones are much more reliable than the other smartphones we had in the house, from well-known vendors. So I think in regard of reliability Fairhone is on a good path. According to once presented DOA statistics (I know it doesn’t say much about long term use; but its a number we have), FP also performs within industry average.
I agree with the other posters before, maintaining a modular design makes sense. However, as I already thought when FP2 was released, in my opinion modularity to such an extent (7 modules) only makes sense when you can also upgrade components. Otherwise I would reduce to only those parts that most often fail/break with smartphones, such as battery, display, usb-socket. If the modules are not upgradeable, I see little reason for other parts to be located on individual modules. I would rather use that space for a bigger battery then.
Just clarifying: I am a “potential customer” interested to buy a Fairphone, but I do not own one (yet)…
You shall be right in “to reduce that to zero”.
The statistics are one year old now…
I agree with you if Qualcomm would not cease support for their SoCs after a few years. A better camera module has been announced for Fairphone 2, but the technical specification of module upgrades depend on the built-in SoC, too. And if the SoC is to be exchanged, Fairphone certainly might think of an instant redesign - Fairphone 3.
That’s certainly right.
But as an FP1 owner this feels really really weird.
You’re thinking about a potential discontinuation of Marshmallow. This is far in the future.
(KitKat will be obsolete in a few months or perhaps in a year.)
I would rate this as a luxury problem.
Correct, but “KitKat”, another 4.x version, was released between “Jelly Bean” and “Lollipop”. I guess it should be possible to adjust same major versions to one device such as the Fairphone 2 with FP Open OS (in the future).
I just created my profile to participate in this forum, I’m really interested in the Fairphone concept, but didn’t buy one yet.
Just like @Gerry shows, there’s no option in the profile creation/modification to put “not an owner”. This should be changed, as you said that the plan would be to get new people with FP3, rather than FP1/FP2 upgrades.
As for the FP3 itself, I would buy one, if it’s not coming out too late. I was using Windows Phone, but the platform is dying and there’s so many thing not working nicely on daily use that I need want to change the phone, even though the hardware is still 100% ok.
Whatever happens with FP3, I’m just hoping for two things :
It will get a SoC as recent as possible, so that Qualcomm (or any other SoC-maker) will provide official support for as long as possible. It saddens me to see that Android 8 is coming in a few months and FP2 got Android 6 just now, and might never see Android 7 because of lack of support.
It will get a clear release schedule soon. I’ve been considering moving from WP to Android for 8+ months, my phones’s hardware is not dying, but the software problems are really getting on my nerves, so I want to move soon. I don’t mind waiting a few more months, but I want to know quickly to make my mind on waiting for FP3 or purchasing something else.
All the rest (phone size, screen quality, power of the SoC, quality of camera, etc.) I can wrap myself around it, but long-term software support is a must for me (I’m seeing 4+ years of use), and knowing the release date will make the difference between buying a FP3 or OnePlus 5 (safe bet for long-term support with custom ROMs).
I bet Fairphone are going to support their current model as good and as long as possible until Fairphone 3 arrives. I do not expect the next Fairphone to be a modular construction, but who knows better than Fairphone themselves? If they are really planning a new (non-modular) concept, the release might be possible in the second half of 2018.
I hope that FP3 will be modular like FP2, or at least the same level of repairability !
For the release date, I just re-read the French interview, it says “coming in 2018” without mentioning early or late 2018, but it also says that they are in the conception phase, so yeah I guess that won’t be early 2018 then
Well, I guess it will be OnePlus 5 for now, but count me in for FP4 !
When it comes to performance optimization in computers, it is very hard to compare apples to oranges. Global performance will be affected both by hardware and software optimization (and that includes the OS and its schedulers, drivers, specific apps…), but also by the type of work undergone (programs that perform the same instruction on multiple data blocks usually scale better with the number of cores than “pipelining” aka. using different instructions sequencially on the same data block for example although this is probably irrelevant with most apps since they are usually bound to one core only).
Overall I’d say if there’s a risk of degraded performance that would come from new OS features and core apps that are too much of a burden for the phone’s hardware (ex. my old phone has issues running some Google Apps and freezes frequently on GMaps and GPlay).