Jolla Sailfish OS to be ported to Fairphone 2

Users of the forthcoming modular smartphone will be offered a choice of operating systems for the first time


A blog post on this from FP too…


FANTASTIC news! For a while there will be only the community version of the OS (so this means no android apps support) but I hope to see the official one soon, with the full Sailfish OS experience (android apps support included)!

Good work!


While I’m very pleased with this new development, I have one small worry: what about the app availability? I have heard that the Sailfish OS supports android apps but only when downloaded through the Yandex store, and then there’s limitations to what you can get and how well it works.

Whenever Sailfish becomes available on the FP2 I’ll probably give it a test run for a week or so, but full functionality will have to be prioritised over style.

Although I’m still an amateur when it comes to software. Would it be possible to download several android apps on FP OS, then keep them when switching to Sailfish?

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As a Jolla owner I am very happy about these news. I will be replacing my old phone with the FP2 once it’s available.

It is possible to install Play Store or any app store on sailfish but I am not sure if android support will run on Fairphone at all because it is third party technology (Alien dalvik by Myriad) and probably needs licensing. That might not be a deal breaker though, Sailfish has a lot of native software available nowadays.

Sorry but what you have heared is inaccurate: Sailfish OS can run android applications from every font, like direct download, F-droid, aptoide, amazon appstore and even the play store (someone had installed it on it’s Jolla, nonsense for me). Personally I use directly downloaded applications or F-Droid ones. And as stated in the blog post they don’t leave the main OS (stock android with all google blobs) but offer an alternative to the people like me that don’t want to have something to do with the big G.
And yes, the selection of native application is sad, even in quantity as in quality. But it’s a very young platform, in a world dominated by walled garden like play store and app store, so the user must adapt at this situation, but the interface is GREAT!

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I’m not a Jolla expert, but it looks like using Jolla on the FP2 will work fine. If one really wants to use the latest Google stuff, the only choice is a Nexus phone … they rest is just playing catching up and hoping that the SoC company is willing to port just another release for you.

The biggest trouble I see is that more and more people expect other people to install an (iOS/Android) app on their phones. “But we have an app for this … why don’t you just …” “No.”

Update: I just read about ART online, it looks like it will work with 32 and 64bits so no worries here, I guess.

Thanks, but I’m still a little confused - if I wanted to get, say, doubletwist or Pocket Casts working on a FP2 running Sailfish, could I just download them onto my desktop and then copy them onto the phone, and they’d work ok? Or would I have to try something else?

Like I said, I heard the Jolla phone couldn’t run the Play store - just Yandex.

I have a Jolla phone as main phone from 2 years now, and I have never used Yandex store: only Aptoide, F-Droid and applications directly downloaded from internet (in my case directly with the browser of the Jolla). Not all the applications are compatible but a lot are.

As far as I know ART will works even on the 32bit platforms.

I kind-of get it now, but it’ll probably still be helpful for the FP crew to post guides on the website detailing how such things are done. I am, alas, a humble iPhone user with little to no experience of using .apk and the like. Wasn’t even aware you could download an app via the phone’s own browser.

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Given that this unity of software and hardware will be the best of both worlds, I’m tempted to switch my cover preference to translucent black and call it the Borg Phone.

Think of the Android support on Sailfish in terms of a virtual machine in your desktop computer. Software like virtual box or vmware or parallels desktop let you install another operating system inside a container on your running operating system.

In theory, you can install any application inside of this container that would run natively on real hardware, wether you bought it on cd, downloaded it from the web or installed it via a a software repository or store. Of course, it is not that easy, since software that depends heavily on the hardware might be tricky. Think of framerate sensitive games that make heavy use of your graphics card. Might not run as fluent in a virtual environment as it would on the real hardware.

In Sailfish, it is basically the same: Alien dalvik is the technology used and it tries to mimic a complete android 2.2 environment, without the google apps. Think of cyanogen mod. In your app drawer on the sailfish level of your phone, the installed android app icons show up next to native apps, they are all shown on the same level.
If you start such an app, it basically opens in the same way as a native app and you are able to minimize such an app and switch seamless to another app. You do not switch to an “android mode” or “boot into android”.
There are many ways to get an android app installed on your phone, the official Jolla store offers lots of android apps itself. You can also download F-Droid, Aptoid and Yandex from the Jolla store. In the Aptoid app, there is a dedicated Jolla store, too.
Apart from that, there is a tutorial on how to install gapps/Play store and you can always try to install a certain apk directly. Has been working fine for me so far.
It all works fine for me, but access to bluetooth from android apps is flaky at best.

I hope that answers some questions.


As per the blog, until there is a stable version and FP officially support it, they won’t be releasing indepth guides etc…these will instead come from the Jolla community. I’m sure there will be cross posting across forums though :slight_smile:

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There should be a cooperation between Jolla and Fairphone forums. A dedicated topic here, maybe, where we and Jolla community members gather posts and tutorials posted on the Jolla forum?

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Yeah, that’s what I meant about cross posting… I should have said collaboration :smiley:

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Oh, OK :woot: I was thinking duplicate posts…

Many thanks! That is a real help. Hopefully the bluetooth issue will be resolved, but if not then I suppose there’ll always be a native Jolla music and/or podcasts app I can use instead.

P.S.: Here’s an in-depth preview of the experience of using the most current version of Sailfish, 2.0.

The ‘current version’ is always a moving target, and as such that video is already out of date with being the current bleeding edge version of Sailfish OS.

So by the time you see it on the fairphone, it will likely be a bit different from what you see there.

Actually, music is not a problem at all! If you use an Android app that plays music and your Jolla is connected to a BT speaker/headphone, that is were the sound comes from. The only thing you might miss is controlling your music via the bt device, like skipping a track or play/pause.

I was referring to things like a heart rate monitor, a smart watch, an OBD2 device, or things like that. You can not control these devices from an android app. There are some native apps for those, at least the Pebble smartwatch works fine with a native app and there is a running app ported from Meego/N9 to Sailfish that supports some heart rate monitors, iirc.