First impressions Fairphone 2

For rooting have a look at the How to root with superuser thread or the one on compiling FP OSOS + root.

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I’m also basically very happy with my 4-day-old FP2.

  • Flickering is occasionally noticeble but is a very minor annoyance (worst when trying to uninstall an app from homepage)

  • Compass doesn’t seem to work for 2-D map - only for the 3-D version, or is that normal?

  • Battery life is not great. Watch a couple of video clips, send an e-mail or 2 and after 20-30 minutes it’s down from 100% to 81%.

  • The extent to which Google is present is disturbing. Google is a nasty company and it’s sad that Fairphone chose to embrace that road, but I guess they have their reasons …
    But these gripes aside, the FP2 is a beautiful piece of design and a pleasure to use … Well done everybody!

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One more little grumble… my FP2 never charges to 100%. It gets to 97 or 98 and then a messages on the screen says something like 'Will be fully charged in 3 minutes", but the message never goes away and the phone never reaches 100% charge.

Maybe you can have a closer look to some comments about this topic:

Have you searched the forum for this? There are quite some threads about the battery. In particular, this could be caused by this Wifi issue

[quote=“joekafka, post:153, topic:11491”]
The extent to which Google is present is disturbing. Google is a nasty company and it’s sad that Fairphone chose to embrace that road, but I guess they have their reasons …
Do you want to get rid of all Google stuff? In that case, the FP team announced the release of an open-source version of the FPOS without any Google apps or services and it is rumored to be released in the first quarter of 2016. You could also consider compiling this yourself from source code, if you feel confident enough.

@joekafka, alternatively you could follow this thread:

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Just to put some numbers in: my FP2 needs 36 seconds to boot to the PIN input dialogue, and 46s inclusive PIN until I can use it. Is it that bad?


no, it is not bad. I wrote another statement afterwards, maybe you want to read that first.

Nevertheless, it boots slower than S5 and I wrote that I compare it to the S5. If you don’t compare then it will be difficult to talk about “fast” and “slow”, as those are purely subjective categories.



I’d like to conclude today by giving my comment on 2nd impression after my very first impression:

    • battery seems to last at least for 1 day while using it actively. Corrected Wifi exclamation issue!
      Remark: correction on 1st impression: 1 charge a day is enough
    • display issues: blocking without cause (sudden screenlock) vanished after 1st disassembly of FP2
      Remark: 2nd impression is how this severe problem got solved, because no locking happened last week. Looking back it became a hardware issue if display hardware modul is not assembled correctly. Subsequently I should monitor FP2-display disassembling and reassembling for quite longer time. Maybe still a risk ?

Final Result: First impression became to me leveled or relativised. The upshot (conclusion) remains that even a minor issue like a module slip and cargo shift after product compound may lead to a major issue for both the customer and the producer. It spoils not only first impression. Finally the biggest issue left is the weak battery. A trusted hardware coming from 2014 claiming higher sustainability deserves and includes longer battery longvity. Also the probable danger of glass and display scrapes for FP2 is the same as with every mobile phone.


3 posts were split to a new topic: Is Fairphone 2’s screen glass durable?

Unfortunately, the Fairphone 2 I received leaves me much less impressed than I had hoped for.

Among the positive aspects are definitely the display quality, the sturdy overall appearance and the fast and (almost) flawless usage experience. The touchscreen- and display-flickering bugs were noticeable but not grave. I assume they will soon be fixed.

Now what definitely did not impress me:

The form factor is a matter of taste but it’s not for me. It is definitely a two-handed brick of a phone without even basic one-hand usability. After hands-on I don’t like the rubber-case design decision much at all.

The camera quality in moderate cloudy conditions (like: half the year) is very slightly better than on the FP1 but still not convincing. Indoors it is so grainy as to be useless and decidedly worse than FP1 (I did side-by-side comparisons). Even outdoors it won’t replace the most basic compact camera.

The sound quality is good in depths and mid-range, but the higher range and voices sounded flat and unappealing. It doesn’t do as a music player for me. Neither does it particularly well as a sound recorder.

Taking off the screen didn’t work for me, following the instructions. No amount of pushing would make it move. Thus I can’t judge on the modularity concept.

Rooting is by now possible, but much easier e.g. on Samsung phones. Without I can’t even write to a USB Stick (an Android issue, I know).

Conclusion: I am ready to accept quite an amount of tradeoff in support of the goals of Fairphone and love the fairness, openness and repairability approach. Even for just supporting Fairphone on the way I would accept a lot of woe. I am willing to pay the 40%/60% premium compared to e.g. a S. Galaxy S5 or S4 (both can run CyanogenMod btw). If, let’s say, the core functions of the Galaxy could be graded “A” and the Farphone scores “B”, as with the display, just fine. But camera and sound score “C” at most. A more careful selection of sound and camera chip probably wouldn’t have raised the price by more than 25€. If one device replaces three or more standalone devices (phone, music player, photo, dictaphone) this is quite a sustainability factor and might outweigh the Fairphone’s current sustainability benefits.

I am very sorry, and it really pains me, but I will make use of the return policy rather than becoming an unhappy supporter. I will stay with my FP1 (that I planned to pass on) and make it last as long as at all possible.

All this is not saying that many people might be just happy with this device. It is my personal usage profile that doesn’t align with this phone.


Hi everybody,

having recieved my FP2, I promissed on the board to give my first impressions… I am sorry to say I am not completely statisfied… let me bullit-point them:

  1. recieved my trackingcode two days after my phone :slight_smile: While this does not say anything about the phone itself, it does about the organisation, I feel. It seems a bit… sloppy…
  2. The backcover is very slippery. It is plastic, but not rubbery. For me, it could be more sticky.
  3. So far, in 3 days time, it has crashed 4 times. Just rebooted itself, while I was using it. This in completely unexeptable. In one occasion, I had to remove the back and pull out the battery - no button would respond.
  4. The proximity-sensor does not always work; sometimes, the display stays on and will respond to my ear, thus switching to handsfree etc.
  5. The audiojack is not properly grounded. When I charge the phone in my car, and listen to music using the audiojack, I get a /lot/ of feedback (ie: “electrical sounds”) - so much that is actually not usable.
  6. The handsfree function (ie: putting the phone in front of you on the table, and using it with loudspeaker/mic gives a bad quality audio. The sound is too soft, and the switching between talking and listening is not properly executed.
  7. Battery life is not great. I expected, this being a bulky phone, to have at least two days. I can manage one, but only barely…
  8. The placement of the on/of switch direclty opposit the volumeswitches is impractical. It is virtually impossible to change the audiolevel without activating the on/of switch.
  9. Performance is good, but not great. Some lag in the interface can be experienced, using very basic functions. (IE: just the phone app)
  10. The camera-shutter button is nice. But you must actually hold the button while shooting video. This is very impractical and very tiresome. Confusingly, the camera makes a sound when you press it (it focusses, I guess) but it will only record when you hold the button.
  11. The flickering screen has been discussed before, but it seems this will be remedied by a software update…

I come from a Moto G, which is a cheapo-phone. I love the idea of the Fairphone, so I bought two. (One for my wife, and one for me.) But I must say that the experience is actually worse than the Moto G - a 3 year old phone. At this point in time, I’m sorry to say, I would not recommend this phone to anyone. It is a /very/ expensive phone for a mediocre experience - at best :frowning:

I am going to use it of course for the next few days. But at the moment, I feel like returning it :frowning:

I installed Nova Launcher on it; I will de-install this and see if the crashes will stop. But if they do not… I bought a very expensive phone. I don’t mind paying extra for the social part of it. In fact, I want to. But I did not expect a sub-par experience with the phone itself.

Sorry, but I am disappointed.


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This is a known bug that some people experience and will hopefully be fixed soon with an update.

Proximity issues can be found on the bugs list too.

…you’ll have to use a very good USB data cable. Otherwise the fluctuation of current will cause static which results in audio crackles and ghost touches.

I heard that it gets better after a few charging cycles. There are also a lot of topics about battery tips e.g. the battery guide.


Maybe you wanna have a look at this. One user suggested that a new device often lacks sound quality and needs to be used for a while to reach its quality (which can be accelerated by playing pink noise).

Some users reported that it is difficult to take off the screen the first time, but then it becomes easier. There are also tutorials available that show how it can be done easily (see first post in that thread)

[quote=“eqfive, post:164, topic:11491”]
The camera quality [is] not convincing

Basically I agree. Though I also have to say that so far no smartphone camera has convinced me, and I am still very often carrying a decent camera with me. Indeed some phones have a slightly better camera installed, but still I never experienced a convincing phone camera yet.

I am looking forward for the FP-OSOS, which should be either easy to root or come rooted. It is rumored that this should happen in the first quarter of 2016 :smile:[quote=“pwiegers, post:165, topic:11491”]

The backcover is very slippery. It is plastic, but not rubbery. For me, it could be more sticky.
[/quote] Personally I think it gives more grip than most other phones I’ve had in my hands.

[quote=“pwiegers, post:165, topic:11491”]
The proximity-sensor does not always work
[/quote]Did you take off the display protection cover? I heard some people say this problem disappeared after removing it. I never experienced any problems so far (I took the cover off immediately).

This was my fear when I saw th specs. Less than 2500 mAh on a 5 inch screen didn’t seem a lot; and it also proofed to not be a lot. With my usage pattern I hardly get though the day. So far the biggest disappointment for me. I had to buy a Powerbank now, so I can use the phone also during long travels (since I also use it as a work phone; hence I am grateful for the Dual-SIM functionality). So in terms of sustainability, A bigger battery would have prevented me (and maybe also others) from getting an extra battery or powerbank.

The size is rather a consequence of the modularity of the phone than because of a big battery. And of course due to the (for my taste over-dimensioned) display size.

[quote=“pwiegers, post:165, topic:11491”]
But you must actually hold the button while shooting video.
[/quote] I trigger the camera shutter on the screen, not with the button. This way there is no need to hold any button while shooting a video.

Hi everybody,

owning my Fairphone since now 4 days, I am very happy with it: It is working as expected, so far no real crashes (2 reboots over night, don’t know why)…

I even was successful to get it working with myphoneexplorer after half a day of trial, this was essential as the phone is to be used for work and must be connected to outlook…


  1. Phone performance as expected (I have a M8 with the 801 Platform…)
  2. Camera as expected (it was clear it’s not the best)
  3. Battery life as expected (no miracles, but compareable with HTC One M8 which is the same H/W Platform
  4. My Phone Explorer work fine : but only reliable after installing Qulacomm driver and ADB driver
  5. I like the Design -real corners, blue transparent back - what was the best choice-
  6. Software is showing good conditions and stability: I was really surprised as I thought on small companies the maturity of the Software is not as good as you show up to now.
  7. UI/GUI is different than others, really easy to use to me and good even for newbies. Also here I would have expected something more complicated as I would expect more the “nerds” byuing the phone- well done.

One con:
In case of low backlight the display flicker a bit while scrolling: this is nasty and makes me a bit crazy in dark conditions. My M8 do not have such problems…

One wish: Bigger Battery still (there is space inside the cover…)

It was a good choice, “Live Long and Prosper”… Fairphone!

See you in the Forum!



This behaviour is listed in the List of known bugs

I’ve had my fp2 for a couple of weeks now and am basically very happy with it. A few questions though:

  • If I shake the phone, there is a small rattling sound. Is this normal?
  • Is there any battery saver app that really extends battery life?

The sound is probably the vibration motor moving.

There is a battery saver integrated in Android. Go to Settings > Battery and tap the “more options” button (three dots) in the top right corner.


Paul again here :slightly_smiling:
Second impressions:

  1. I de-installed Nova Launcher - the crashes stopped !! I reinstalled it, and the crashes came back. So, for the moment, I would advise people not to use this Launcher on the FP2. (I do use quite a bit of apps, so the FP2 launcher is not really workable for me. At the moment, I am using ZenUI. I do not like all those “extra launchers”, but I need more space than just one homescreen. :slightly_smiling: )
  2. About the failing proximity sensor: if I am using a headset when the phone rings, I need to take it out as I do not yet have a headset with a working mic. When I then raise the phone to my ear, the proximity sensor does not shut down the screen. So, I would as people to test this scenario, but for the moment this would seem a bug to me: the proximitysensor is not re-engagaged when you take out a headset plug and use the phone in “normal” mode.

So, working with it, for the moment the FP2 for me is a workable phone. I will try some other launchers, and am searching for a good headset to use with it. I am aware of the wiki, but I want an “sports-in-ear”, like this one. But at the moment I am hesistating to buy it, not being sure if it will work :slightly_smiling:



You can have more than 15 screens (I stopped testing at 16) with the standard FP launcher and you can create folders.[quote=“pwiegers, post:172, topic:11491”]
but for the moment this would seem a bug to me

Yep, it’s on the list of known bugs.

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