within about a year, my FP3 has a broken core module / main module for the 2nd time. Luckily, the 1st time was just within warranty and the module was replaced for free - one year later, exactly the same symptoms, and now, it’s definitely out of warranty.
If it was the 1st time, I’d definitely have it repaired, but now I am worried that the next one will break too soon again.
Seeing that newer FPs come with a 5 year warranty (which is great), I consider getting an FP5 as replacement. Nevertheless I wonder whether defective core modules are a known issue with fairphones, and (if yes) whether this also applies to FP5. While I’d be “safe” for 5 years, it’s less about the repair costs than about the hassle that a broken core module brings (data loss, set everything up from scractch, etc).
Did anyone have similar experiences with FP3? And maybe (or not) with FP5?
Just to be fair: there are also people who have had the FP3 for 4 years and have not had any problems with its core module (although, in my case, I have had problems with the USB port and the screen, but I have been able to solve them by opening the phone and cleaning contacts, without having to buy or change parts)
I have a feeling that having the core module fail twice is very bad luck… but obviously it has happened to you, and it must be very frustrating. I feel sorry for you. To be honest, in your case, if you can afford it, I would probably choose the FP4 or FP5 with a 5 year warranty, to be sure that if I’m unlucky again, my phone will be repaired free of charge.
In any case, I would also consider @yvmuell’s proposal: contact the official FP support to see if they can offer you a discount or explain more about what could have happened…
With “an FP3 thing”, I didn’t want to imply that the majority of users is having this kind of issue. It’s just noticeable that most (maybe all) reports of sudden deaths in here are about FP3, and not 4 or 5.
It might be bad luck, but I also consider it might be related to how people use or carry their phone, so that it’s more likely to happen to some users. (It’s not that I am treating my hardware in a bad way, but it could e.g. make a difference whether the phone is usually kept in a trousers’ pocket vs. jacket pocket.)
The 5yr warranty is a great thing (and I’d definitely go for FP5 over FP4 for that reason), nevertheless I’d be frustrated if the main part of the phone would have to be replaced several times in these 5 years. It’s just not what I expect of a sustainable phone which is designed to last.
If already contacted FP support and asked for advice, let’s see how they respond. Unfortunately they seem to be under heavy load ATM.
Right! I hadn’t considered that… although I think that yes, the daily “stress” that certain components can suffer, especially when it is a modular device, can be a determining factor. Also the weather conditions of the place where it is used, for example.
I read here a few days ago that the 5 years warranty can also be requested with the FP4:
Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for support to take several days to respond, although this is not ideal at all. As yvmuell points out, if you are comfortable speaking English (or Dutch, I guess ), people often comment on the forum that phone support is a quicker and more effective option.
Thanks for the additional information, esp. regarding FP4 warranty - I had the impression that 5yrs warranty for FP4 was no longer available as of 2024 (but that was outdated information, obviously).
As much as I’d love an answer right now I am just going to wait until I hear back from fairphone support. I assume that speeding up things for me (bypassing the queue by calling in) also means slowing things down for everyone else, and I don’t like that.
Anyway: in case anyone stumbles across this thread with similar problems, this thread was a good read for me. I learned about “reflowing” the motherboard which might (or not - have not tried yet) at least help to recover some stuff that wasn’t in the backup. It also covers some background information about the evolution of FP’s frame (as mentioned by @yvmuell above), which makes me hope that newer versions are less likely to break that way.
After checking out @Mixigodo 's hints, I noticed that refurbished FP4 are currently in stock - a good deal together with 5yr warranty. So I ordered one immediately and told the support that my issue is resolved.
@jenz Good to hear that you found this “solution”! Considering your dead FP3: you could consider selling or offering the remaining modules on the forum as spare parts, maybe someone (or maybe a nearby FP angel) is interested.
you could consider selling or offering the remaining modules
for now, I will keep it as spare parts depot for my wife’s phone, hoping she’ll break something else than her main module but when we no longer need them some time in future, we will happily give them a 2nd life
Just in case you don’t know already anyway: It is super-easy to detach the motherboard from (what the Repair Service calls) the rear module – just unscrew the two screws that hold the board in the housing with a Torx T5 screwdriver. Either you or someone else might stil need the rear module at one point, and it cannot be purchased in the spare parts shop.