Latest news [11-07-2017] and FAQ - Fairphone 1 KitKat 4.4.4 update

We have a FP1 (First Edition!) and a FP2.
OS-Update for FP2 Android 6.0 is ok.
It’s not ok that you do not develop FP1. It is reliable, tough, doesn’t need much accu, it’s smaller than FP2.
Hey folks, it is NOT an old thing to throw in the dustbin. I think you habe the commitment not to forget the FP1.
Regards frpm Bavaria

Reading the status in the very first post in this thread it is especially not true that they do not develop FP1…


Say this to the chipset manufacturer (MediaTek) and the app developers (who were dropping support for Android versions 4.2 and/or 4.4).


But again we do not get an update :frowning:
This is it not making customers happy!
I as one first investors in Fairphone feel betrayed as I don’t get any info that may help me :frowning:
It would be easy to report regularly on the on-going of the updating by reporting how much of the repositories already have been ported/tested. How many known bugs are there.
By this one could make up its mind!
Instead of this you get a notice very now and then telling you “it is difficult to port”.

Regarding chipset manufacture: This would should been a topic already when FP1 was developed!
Telling the crowd-founders to develop a sustainable phone, but then using a chipset that cannot evolve is not a good story, is it?

“Predicitons are difficult. Especially of the future” How do you know that in 2 years the Chipset-vendor will drop support for new Android versions?
I share your frustration but I think that it is not necessarily the fault of the FP-people (if they asked and were lied to by the Chipset-vendor)


I don’t blame them. Those old Android version aren’t being used much nowadays and are missing many features of newer versions.

But what features does a typical app need? If it’s only the most up-to-date Android SDK then to hell with those features. Android as it is practiced today is obsolescence by design. Fairphone at least tries to mitigate this as well as possible.


Yes, prediction is an art of it’s own, but Android 4.2 was outdated already when Fairphone 1 was delivered, but it was claimed by FP to be up-to-date back then (although Andriod 5.0 was already published)!
All crowd-founders obviously accepted it, but the promise of sustainability includes sustainability in software and this promise was obviously broken from the first moment!
With raising FP2 (which might be technical more advanced) it seemed that only FP2 is supported, FP1 and the original supporters (who made the FP2 possible!!!) were abandoned! Nobody gave real sustainable, reliable information!

To phrase it differently: Sustainability is also a topic of information!! And this part of sustainability is missed completely to FP1users!

So I feel like a CASH COW and I am frustrated and I will not recommend buying a FP based on this experience!

I also claim that by giving more info to the community about problems/current state would have prevented this mistrust that I had develop over the last years!
I claim the info policy!


According to Google’s survey, every fifth Android device (= 20.0 %) runs with Android 4.4 (KitKat). And every 20th Android device (= 5.1 %) runs with Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean).

So, if nearly one third (= 31.9 %) of all Android devices still use “those old Android versions” (before 5.0 Lollipop), one can say that this versions are still much used.


As an original fairphone buyer I accept that the my money was used to kickstart a project which is still working towards its final goals. FP1 was never going to be perfect and its a shame that the lifetime of the software was hurt buy closed source parts. But without it there would never have been FP2 (which I plan to order soon). If I could donate directly towards software upgrades to FP1 I would. FP1 still works great as my main phone, but I am not heavy app user.


Aaaaaahhhhhhh tanks for this comment. I have the same point of view. And I’m happy to hear this.


That depends on the app, of course.

And for most apps it would certainly be possible to maintain backwards compatibility with old Android versions.

But it is way more easy to e.g. only support the Material Design (so Lollipop and up) - you wouldn’t need to add a Holo design or use the Android Support Library.
The permission system on Marshmallow and up is another example where having to support a wide range of old versions makes apps way more complex than they need to be.

If I were to make an app, I would try to support KitKat to Nougat (simply because they are the currently supported versions).


Sadly yes, that’s true. I would say 4…4 (KitKat) is still relevant.


I don’t. I didn’t give away money to support a project, I paid for a product that I want to keep using (and which I chose according to my beliefs in fairness and sustainability).
If my money made developping FP2 possible, that’s fine by me as long as I have what I paid for : a long-lasting phone.
I don’t have the money to buy a new phone every 3 years, especially when FP2 is 200€ more than FP1, and even if I had, that is not what FairPhone advertised.


The sad truth is, that common smartphone are designed to last only about two years.

One the one hand, Fairphone promised a long lasting phone and they are struggling to do so.
On the other hand, the FP1 is already older than three years and is therefore actually over lasting common phones by 50% livespan and they still keep efford to update the software though. For the first generation of a product, made by people who didn’t had a clue in beforehand this is not nothing.


8 posts were split to a new topic: Fairphone 1 end of life options (newsletter)

A post was merged into an existing topic: Fairphone 1 end of life options (newsletter)

My question might be a bit off-topic, but here it is: I’ve read that an unofficial FP1 4.4 OS does already exist, and is working well, bluetooth included.

I have the feeling that there is some non-said thing going on here. It looks too good to be true, when we see the difficulties that Fairphone encounters in achieving the same result officially.

So where is the catch with this unofficial 4.4 OS? Is there some blurred licensing issue conveniently pushed under the carpet? Is there some magic non-opensource blob included, that Fairphone can not use? Or maybe some features from the original FP1 had to be disabled to achieve a stable OS? Some other thing?

Or is Fairphone just too perfectionist and insisting on shipping some new feature that is hell to get right?

Please do not take this as a critic against Fairphone. I know how hard they work to support the FP1, and how exceptional that is!


I think you are talking about the KitKat port by @chrmhoffmann?

It is indeed not possible for Fairphone to encourage that build because FP1’s software is not open source. @chrmhoffmann’s build is compiled from many different unofficial sources he found around the web.

Regarding your feature hypothesis: The reason that Fairphone hasn’t released a new alpha build for a while is simply that it doesn’t boot. :frowning:


It’s working about as well as Fairphone’s build. I don’t recall if bluetooth worked fine, though. It did have newer Android (4.4.4) with security updates up to May 2016.

Sure, as otherwise it would work worse than the last official Fairphone OS (1.8.7)!

Though my arrogant opinion is that these top 2 bugs are minor issues¹, and having Android 4.4.4 with latest security updates would outweigh them :relieved:

¹ well, at least battery level drops, as it’s just the algorithm showing battery level, not actual battery life.