Fairphone as first phone

Hello, dear Fairphone Community,
I wonder if I should get a Fairphone as my first phone? What is your opinion?

Well, I had a FP2 for five years, and now am using a FP3 for shy over two years now as my only phone. I was/am using LineageOS on both, as soon as available.
Compared to the hiccups on my wife’s phone, and staying up to date with security fixes, I’m more than happy

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See a similar topic

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If the other alternative is not having a phone or buying a feature phone (the small ones with buttons), the latter two options would be better. A feature phone requires a lot less resources than a smartphone does, and buying no phone obviously doesn’t use any resources at all. I can also suggest you to buy a used phone online, if you want to save some money.

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Why not.
I do not see what speaks against it
There are no entry-level smartphones. That is pure suggestion of the manufacturers to justify their cheap crap.
And when you buy their crap, you get annoyed after four weeks, throw the thing away and buy something real.
That has nothing to do with sustainability.

So it’s better to do it right.
If you buy cheap, you buy twice

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Oh boi… What a topic.
I assume you mean your first smartphone and thus your first entry into what seems complicated and scary because of all the features it has.
Let’s first state the obvious: you’re not getting the best bang for your buck. What you’ll miss out on most is polished software and hardware. Fp’s are bigger, heavier and slower than comparably priced phones. It’s a small company with limited resources.
Now to the details:
I would personally say that in terms of “tech problems” Fairphone is pretty good. I saw little complaints about the fp3 and my fp4 had had no tech issue to fix so far. It just works. Not always as perfectly or swiftly as I’d expect from a 600€ product… But the features work.
Build quality is great imo. They are sturdy and easy to disassemble, look good (especially the fp4 looks really good) and don’t feel like toys. Most of the hardware used is also of adequate quality.
Here’s where you’ll have to jump in and think:
Fp3 has the issue of getting a bit old and running ina low price tier. That means the hardware just won’t be supported forever. Some apps might not work at some point or it might get exceptionally slow. If you get it second hand that’s fine. As a new purchase i personally think that makes it less sustainable.
Fp4 does not have a headphone jack! If you need one, don’t think you won’t miss it. You will. You can buy extra gadgets to get one but it’s nowhere near the same comfort.
Fp3 has a less than great camera, so if you ever thought: oh how beautiful I’d like to capture that!.. Good luck. You’ll recognize it … but you won’t produce art.
Fp4 on the other hand has good camera hardware but the worst camera app in the universe (seriously it makes atrociously bad pictures), so be prepared to install some other camera app and maybe to use some manual controls for really good pictures.
But that’s about it as far as I’ve seen. FP’s team has really done a lot to make their concept work. They didn’t do everything they set out to do but tbh that would’ve been herculean.
One great added benefit: if you want to really own your phone, look into it and maybe even repair it if it breaks, while knowing absolutely nothing about phones… Fairphone are amazing. You can easily disassemble and reassemble them without issue and just learn about your device.
They are definitely good enough for everything an average user would want to do.
Lastly: if you just want smth to call people with get a flip phone. Best fidget toys ever.

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I consider that not fully representative

  • FP2 has been going for 7 years in some cases and has recently had an OS update to Android 9 from A4 originaly
  • As far as getting slow, again reffering to the FP2, you will find that users here have just restet the phone or cleared apps and memory to bring back up to speed

If as you say this is the first phone for a newbie and a considered person they may well have no such problems for anequally long period &+ years maybe. ??

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You’re right. Fairphones actually seen to have a very good track record in that regard and i do not want to act like you should always only buy the latest greatest.
It’s a point to consider though imo. The fp3 is some years old now and if you buy it new that won’t magically make the hardware any more recent.
You can live with that ofc. Just be last week i meet someone who deadass ran the iPhone 4. It’s just something to be aware of. Part of the smartphone package in my view is the smooth feedback and painfree operation. I don’t want my phone to feel painful to use. I use it too much to accept that in my life and i plan my purchases around that as not to waste resources.
That’s why i recommended buying used if they can. No new resources are used for that. The fp3 will be a good phone for quite some years to come i expect.

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Well, now I’m telling about my experience with Fairphone. Fairphone 3 was my first phone. I got it in 2020, but it had a lot of problems and the support wasn’t the best. Or I would say it was really bad. They wanted to do many tests to find out what is wrong with my Fairphone and they wanted to do it again and again. After a long time (I’m not sure but I think 5 or 6 months) we said that they have to sent us a new device. They did it. I had a lot of bad experience with Fairphone, but (!) I like the concept and I think Fairphone changed many of these terrible thinks and now the Fp4 has 5 years guarantee, so I would try it, you cannot do something wrong. It is a normal phone, but with one good idea more. Sorry for my out of the context message and for my english. I hope I could help you.

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Welcome to the forum.
Yes support can be, to say the least, sometimes laborious but I have two Fp3+ over a year old and they are fine, even though one took a dive into the toilet.

One small complaint about the FP4 was that is was a bit heavy. My response to that is to thank your fate for not being one of the miners carrying thier lot day after day.

So yes buying a Fairphone can be a bit of a weight, but it’s a sign of character building.
:om:

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If you mean main phone: Sure, why not?

Best wishes,
Thomas

Dear community my son is turning 13 and I want to buy a Fairphone for him, I think it will be a really nice first experience, from what I read about it, but your opinion will be very useful

Hello, I moved your post here as it seemed to just further specify your request from last week. Let us know if this needs to be reversed.

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I guess age is not really that important. Just like with any tool, it’s about how you will use it. I suppose 13 year olds do a lot of TikTok/Instagram. So maybe check with him if he values a high quality camera and microphones. At the moment a Fairphone is not doing great in that department. They are working on improvements, but since the release there hasn’t been any change yet.

I returned my Fairphone because I couldn’t send proper voice messages via Signal. Among other issues such as the camera quality in low light, but the microphone issue really made life difficult. Video calls also are a pain since noise cancellation doesn’t work properly. For work I need to be able do make video calls. So that also was part of the decision to return it.

So in a nutshell, best to talk with your son.

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Maybe this experience helps

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I have two FP3+ and the mics and images are more than fine as stand alone or video, WhatsApp and Signal included.

Oh and I have a notification LED :smile:

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If you seek confirmation that the phone is reliable and is well suited as an every day companion, well yes it is. I’m using it since many years (currently a FP3), for nearly everything including development and never got to its limit. Have to admit that I’m not playing hardware intensive games though.

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