Fairphone marketing is like Apple's one :(!

I am extremely annoyed by the fact that Fairphone has fallen into this “black-out marketing” bullshit, with a useless and hollow pseudo “teasing campaign”, putting information under embargo, photos published and then withdrawn, etc! Especially for the target audience, who is rather fond of quiet transparency and… is certainly not the kind of people to go camping at 2am in front of a shop to be the very first to acquire THE very waited last device! :roll_eyes:
(On August 27th or 31st, will Bas Van Abel, or her replacement Eva Gouwens, have to afflict us with a “keynote” conference in black T-shirt?!)
As for the possible “necessary secret” regarding competition, it would obviously be just as useless or even ridiculous. On the one hand, because Fairphone is not likely to tickle their technological advance, and on the other one, because the “Great” phone-makers of the planet never even noticed that a midge had settled on one of their toes! :rofl:
Anyway, my question is: our Dutch friends, wouldn’t they be getting… a big head (in French : prendre le melon) ? :wink:
Wouldn’t it be more simple to inform US (the passionate supporters of this Fairphone adventure) of the next specifications of the FP3… all along the way?


Yes and No, but most of all NO.
Why not learn from the success of others?
Why would and should “WE” (the passionate supporters) be treated any different like all the others (not yet) passionate supporters?
I am not in it for the feeling of being different (and maybe better) than the others.
I am in it for enabling Fairphone to get a chance to change the market.
That’s for example why I got me a FP2 while my FP1 was still working fine. At that time it seemed likely, they miss the goal of buyers in the fundraising period. So I wanted to do my share to make it happen.

If the “Apple”-marketing helps to spread their message, by attracting more newspapers: GREAT !
If it helps to reach out to more non-passionate people and gets them to take a closer look and buy a FP3: GREAT !
If it helps, to get Fairphone out of the niche of tech-addicts, programmers and passionate people: GREAT !

If - in retrospect - it did none of the above: Tough luck, but it still was worth a try (though I doubt it will do any harm). In that case they should and surely will analyze what went wrong and do better next time.

But what will Fairphone gain, if they only focus on the ones that are convinced already?
Us FP2-owners are not the primary target, as we should keep our phone for a while longer if possible.
My hope is, that “US”, the passionate supporters, did help them to make the FP3 a product for the masses, with none of the teething troubles many of US had to face.


Apple is currently the biggest company who uses the type of marketing where a hype builds up, but they didn’t invent it, nor are they sole company who use it. It works for smaller company not because of tight control (like Apple) but because they’re under the exposure radar. To get max exposure, they’ll flood us with all the official news on 27th August. It makes sense to me. Best choice? Who am I to judge.


Fairphone’s ethos is to change the electronics industry to better, not marketing. If you tackle so much problems in the world at the same time, you’re doomed to fail.


…up to some point. But still they are in business and managed to have another new product ready for sale without the need of any crowd-funding or pre-order phase.

Maybe there was some misunderstanding?
I guess @Roboe meant to say, that FP rightly focuses on fair electronics not on changing the marketing world. If they would try to change everything in one go, they were doomed to fail.
Because they stay focused, they are doing fine, like you said.

I really fail to see, what’s so wrong with the Apple marketing?
One might not like it, but it’s successful without being political incorrect.


Dear BertG,
With your reasoning ("if Apple marketing is effective, why would Fairphone not use the same?), we can go further: "If Apple smartphones are effective and sell well (and are strong and durable), why not making the Fairphones like Iphones?
My opinion is that the “packaging” should also talk a bit about content. In reality things (we all appreciated the “eco-friendly” packaging of FP2 when we received it), but also in the sales and communication policy, it seems to me…
When doing AS the other smartphones-makers, we send a message which says “We are like them”… and it is not the right way to stand out. Because NO, we are NOT like them, we are the exact OPPOSITE of them! This small Dutch company is less primarily interested in profit (like Apple and Samsung are, without regarding life conditions of their workers in Africa or China), than by broadcast its message of ethical and ecological responsibility.
So I maintain that the way to publicize FP3 should also have been “different” :expressionless:


Sorry, I happen to disagree there, and I have the feeling, you take my reasoning way out of context or I happened to not make myself clear enough.

  1. I never meant, that the results justify the means.
    FP is still and shall build a more sustainable smartphone. I thought, I really expressed, that this is what FP - in my opinion is all about.

  2. In what way is Apples way of marketing going wrong?
    And I am talking about the marketing, not about presenting a new device every other year?
    Do they promise something their devices do not deliver? Do they deceive the customers or the public? If that is the case, I stand corrected. If my perception is right, they don’t.
    What can be wrong, if FP uses the same strategy to raise expectations for their phone, to make it into the newspapers?
    Of course they will not and shall not sell the phone on the same specifications, like best display, outstanding camera, next generation AI assistant … etc.
    Fairphone most likely will present a phone, on all the right details, that are so valuable to us, i.e. modularity, production with regard to social and environmental issues, offering a google-free OS etc.
    So, if the marketing used by Apple to sell shiny bling-bling phones is used by Fairphone to sell a message and a sustainable, modular and fair phone, what is wrong with that.

Just don’t mix the product with the marketing.
It can not be in the interest of Fairphone and all it’s supporters to settle with less effective marketing.

One more point:

In my opinion FP is not the opposite of all the others.
Fairphone is like all the other phone companies insofar, that they offer a fantastic smartphone, that is for everyone and fit for daily use, be it a private citizen or a company.
They are different insofar, that they are livin proof, that phones like the Fairphone need not to be done exploiting workers in mines and factories etc.

For changing the market from within and getting out of the niche, I guess, users have to be convinced by the product and it’s performance. In my opinion the majority might be willing to pay more for the things, Fairphone stands for, but first of all, they want a phone that offers the performance they need. Therefore the phone has to be advertised as well, not just the “fairness”.

(Edit: just corrected a spelling-error.)


There is a critical difference between Fairphone B.V. and Apple Inc. or any other of the top ten players in the market. These companies are big, real big. Their turnover exceeds the gross national product of half of the countries out there. These economic behemoths don’t fold out of the blue in a few months. Economic logic demands that they don’t spontaneously quit their successful business model, either. Their top models are at the forefront of current technology. Being openhanded with information might enable competitors to get an edge. So them going dark on future products makes sense economically. In the public this triggers memes along the line “they MUST be preparing something”. Projections from the past evoke expectations of big reveals. Influencers spread the rumors, major media outlets publish speculating articles.

Things look very different for small players like Fairphone B.V. Except for us fan boys here on the companies forum virtually nobody speculates and builds a hype for the big reveal. If they go dark on tangible plans for future products it looks awfully similar to a foreshadow of them going out of business.

Getting the fairphone3 out soon(ish) is kind of mandatory. Keep in mind, the fairphone2 is out of stock for like six months now. So they may just as well tell the public about it. Actually, early and detailed announcements are a proven way to induce full-grown hype in the target audience. Look up any successful crowd funding campaign for examples.

Currently, there is no hype for fairphone3 to speak of. This could have been way different if there had not been an almost perfect information embargo.

It worries me that Fairphone B.V. dropped the ball in this aspect. I hope, the actual product can make up for that.


Well to make it match, the Fairphone 2 has to work proprely.
I am patient but have been going through big trouble since getting the phone in 2018 and without putting extra stress on the phone :
the micro has gone for the third time (I thank Fairphone for having replaced each time), my carmera is bust for no clear reason,
my connection is absolutely terrible regardless of which account i have, I swithed from Syma to Sosh and still can’t call from home without having to prance around the appartement loooking for a fair connection. I loive in Paris not exactly the lost island our bit of countryside where conactions are understandalbly troublesome.
So let’s not shout about taking over the mobile phone world quite yet. Or am i totally lost?

No, of course you’re not!
My guess - and hope - is, that FP has learned one or the other lesson from FP2.
That’s why the design of the FP3 - as I perceive it - is much more sturdy than the FP2. The display seems to be fixed with a number of screws, as seem the other modules.
Many troubles with the FP2 - in my opinion - originated from the modularity and the rather flexible connections. The phone can be twisted in every direction more than I would consider to be good for daily use and carrying in the trouser-pocket.

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Well I haven’t put my hands on the fp3 yet and if the price is at least as high as the fp2 i won’t be able to in the near future. Unlucky for me.

I’m betting for ~400€: they want to make it more affordable. FP2 was meant to be at this price but the Dollar had suddenly risen right after FP2 tech specs were validated, if I remember well… But as they are a small company, and ethically oriented, it’s hard to lower the costs on other things than lowering the device’s capacities: no scale savings, no cheap children to underpay, huge R&D investments, huge after sales costs for all the problems that will appear compared to their numbers of sales…


Yes i don’t believe one can make a descent product, on all aspects, cheap. It regards clothes, vegetables and fair phones of course.


Lets hope, the FP2 served as an example to learn from and the FP3 will be more reliable.
I guess Faiphone themselves are convinced of it, or they would not chose this way for market entry (just my guess of course).


This is untrue. There are going to be a lot of websites who are going to cover the full news of Fairphone 3 on August 27. There are also websites who communicated on (some of) the leaks/breadcrumbs.

Fairphone would know, as they sold their previous two smartphones via crowdfunding.

That you 1:1 silence (or no product announcement) with going out of business is your take on the matter; not mine, nor everyone’s.


When there was no news some couple of months ago there was quite some rumours here on the forum and elsewhere if Fairphone would continue…because FP2 (almost) sold-out and no news on anything new coming.

Than, as a company, you have to make a choice what to do. You can either decide, as FP did in the past, and do full announcement and also start taking pre-orders, though not knowing when exactly the device will come.
Or you can do it as done now…give some teasers away, but not make too much clear yet to avoid false hopes or announce dates you can’t make true.

I am glad this time they didn’t go fully open too early, I remember very well how frustrating it was for everyone when the FP2 got delayed a few times, just like with FP1.
It seems they learned from past mistakes :slight_smile:


I agree that more transparency would be nice. See how PinePhone is handling it for example. An account which answer every questions for month, even if the phone is not out yet! And being transparent about what’s going on doesn’t force you to make any promise, especially you don’t have to announce any release date.

Fairphone is alone on that market, from my point of view, hiding things bring nothing.

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If I get it right, PinePhone is just entering the market.
When Fairphone did that, they acted the same way as PinePhone does now.

Since Fairphone is already established in the market and aiming for greater sales numbers, they have to try and get as much media coverage for their new phone as possible.
And to that regard in my opinion opening he curtain with a fanfare in combination with a few glimpses ahead is more effective, than informing on all the progress, they are making.
Even more so, since they have no “brand new concept”, that everyone might be interestet in watching to enfold as it happens. It’s “just a phone” but done in a different, more sustainable way.
One more important point - in my opinion:
Keeping it a secret has given Fairphone total freedom of development; trying first one thing and then the other before going a third way. No need / pressure to do something just because it seemed a good idea, was communicaated and now is expected to happen (especially featurese and accessories). No disappointed hopes this way. :smile: :wink:


There are various projects which regularly report, and then fail to deliver. Librem is unlikely to meet 20019Q3. Same for Cosmo Communicator.

Apex Legends wasn’t marketed before release. Then boom, instant hit.

I don’t want to think in extremes, I think there are pros and cons to both methods (if there is even ‘just 2’).

PS: Today’s D-Day!! :slight_smile: