Leaving a movement

Oh, c’mon, it really is a big thing. Try to find other company selling a product with so aggresive market competition like a smartphone but being produced almost-full fairly. You can blame Fairphone’s communication, marketing, support, product quality, FP1 hardware or FP2 software, but not that. Be fair with them you all. It’s a hard world. Let’s make it better.


Thank you @Roboe for every single word!

Probably there are a lot of customers to which the respective prices of the FP1 or FP2 make their acquisition a serious investment. Then there was a time when one had to wait to get the ordered device and currently is a time, when support is far from being reliable.
So far for our efforts, sacrifices and achievements as customers.

And then there is people who set up a company like Fairphone with limited resources in a world of customers who have been completely convenience brainwashed.

So yeah, [quote=“Roboe, post:21, topic:20270”]
it really is a big thing


Every now and then everybody complaining - don’t get me wrong, I have had my share of tech device frustrations - should be reminded, that this complaining is about a luxury device. Even though our society develops into a direction where constant connectivity is claimed to be essential, the really essential things to most people are still stuff like drinking water, food, medicine and shelter.
And if it was not for Fairphone, the complained about device would be a lot more stained with blood and tears and sweat by people having to deal much more with those essential issues every day.


Please don’t get me wrong. I am sitting this weekend in my FP2 laboratory with 2 battery protection modules for doubling FP2 batteries in Dirks FP2 case from shapeways 3D printout cases.
Maybe it is this hardware work that made me underestimate the outsight of bright sunny future of a complete fair traded phone in the future of a brave new world :wink:

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When I underestimated the movement it seems to be fair to overrate the purchase of a luxury device. However this topic helps me to remind why I even took part in the crowd funding period.
Because I take out battery several time these days I get reminded by the “writings on the wall” inside my FP2 to almost exactly the day last year when I decided to transfer money to FP.

1 year anniversary should remind me on the goals I had in mind before joining the movement.
So here follow my 3 wishes to the smartphone-fairy from last year:

I wanted a phone that is open enough for extending hardware & software by myself. Especially one that replaces google slavery or even replaces complete android by other operating systems.

The second place matching was a revolution modular design. I am afraid that most people on the forum - not only this topic - are not aware that google failed on building their modular design called Ara.
The biggest company promising to be first flag ship for making a brave new world tried and tried more than a year and … finally failed while FP prevailed. This is david against goliath story at best. ( mission accomplished!)

Only on third place on top of demand ranking was my attitude to fair traded ressources. More challenging was my request on the payment limit about the real price label that follows the biggest effort on fair traded ressources. What are the real costs of a modern smartphone ? ( already answer given by FP therefor accomplished )

One year after - only due to my requests - I have to admit that the FP2 was worth buying it. For me these answers and the values behind this are more important still today than the quality issues about a device quality standard of year 2014 that I bought in 2015.

Having my 3 wishes fullfilled today is to me more important than to be part of a movement that overrates moral issues on a luxury device. However if my FP2 breaks down by poor quality restriction then also both leading technical goals may fall with it. This is not clear with only my own device but should be reviewed at the end of this year for all FP2s. Otherwise people who took fair traded ressource at first may still follow the movement.


I agree with that, it is a big thing to start a fair phone. And you (@anon9505190) should also acknowledge that they are open about not being at a 100% fairness.

But it is not only about fairness when it comes to the production process it is also about costumer fairness. It is ok to make mistakes, it is ok not to provide a super device right from the start as a small company. But if you make mistakes you need to clean up the mess afterwards and not blame others for you own faults.

This shows the lack of customer fairness. I did not buy a prototype, I bought a full price device. And the lack of counter arguments from any of the Fairphone officials (@Douwe, @anon90052001) substantiates my impression on not being valued.

In fact the only official statement I got was from @paulakreuzer leaving me with the feeling of being a sponger that is just fishing for free / cheap spare parts.

What is the big thing here. They have the my device, they also gave it to a company that repairs phones. All they had to do was to get a usb jack and repair it. Refusing this and telling me to buy the mainboard seems to me like they just want to make more money out of the FP1 customers.

I am trying to base my purchase decision on two things fairness and resource-efficiency independent of the kind of product I am buying. The Fairphone is way better than any other smart phone when it comes to fairness, I get that. But in terms of resource-efficiency it fails heavily. To me buying an unfair device - which lasts 4-5 years (that is my experience with mobil phones) - is as good / bad as buying two fair devices which last the same time.

So next time I need a new device I will not buy a Fairphone but instead buy an unfair device and give 5%-10% of the price to charity (projects focusing on improving the working / living conditions). I just paid the 59€ and this is the last money I am going to give to Fairphone.


Dear FrankM. The forum is the place for the community to come together and discuss. Not a place for official replies. I follow this discussion with great interest and I will reply when I feel I have something to add. So far I have nothing to add to the many arguments different people have already made. The community is very well-informed.

But let me make one thing clear: the early and continued support of Fairphone 1 buyers is very highly valued. We’re doing everything within our capabilities to support all the Fairphone 1 owners out there as with, for example, the update to Android 4.4. Sadly there are limits to what we can do, and various posters in this thread have correctly pointed them out.


I don’t know what you mean with official statement, but he is also “just” a community member, so I doubt he gave you an official statement.

I see why you you’re frustrated about the situation, and I would be as well!
Yet I have the impression that mainly it is the repair company to blame, for both, being unable to do proper repairs as well as for making the judgment that the damage is not a warranty case. Sure, it can be argued that Fairphone contracted this particular company, no doubt about it. I can also understand how a company like Fairphone depends on the judgment about warranty cases of these so called “experts”, though I don’t see why Fairphone couldn’t be more accommodating after you were telling them that you used the same charger for another FP1 without any problems, and how it is not possible to do repair work that other repair shops can do. This should clearly be sign for Fairphone to think over again what contractor they chose, although I don’t know what alternatives there are available.
After all, I am very sympathetic to your frustration about this incident, but I think that I personally would be rather mad and angry about the contractor than Fairphone itself.


In the hype of a big thing so many different achievements and expectations with FP devices are packed up partly only as promises and on top of it boasts a label written with “Fairphone”. Now just at the bottom and at the end of the chain some customers seems to be the only link that can not expect the same treatment as with any other vendor or producer. THis is another big question I wanted to avoid:
Is the customer support the hidden expense to all other achievements ? I’m afraid it is and it’s bitter because the price of the FP phones seems to be even much higher.

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You care but there is nothing to be added to this statement: [quote=“fp1_wo_sw_updates, post:19, topic:20270”]
The FP1 is a lost cause. It was a prototype for learning on how to get “fair” minerals from a supply chain into a standard phone.
Well then we do definitely have a different understanding of the term “being valued”. Why are your limits exceeded by getting the device repaired by the company that checked my device? And I do not accept the statement made by the support: “it was not made to be repaired in that way”.

It feels good that many people here do understand my reason to post here and why I am disappointed. I really do, but it is upsetting that all of you find different causes for the problem just not the company Fairphone it self. I was not able to pick a company to check my phone, it was Fairphones choice. The company tells the support the reason for the problem. The support could have come to the conclusion that this is something which is caused by poor quality and not by improper use. Maybe the company that checked the phone is even willing the repair the device but Fairphone is just more interested in making more money by selling spare parts.

You are right, my formulation was wrong there.

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Dear FrankM,

Thank you for your extensive list of issues here and taking the time to lay-out what your problems with Fairphone are. I am really sorry to hear you feel so strong and negative about what once was a movement you clearly supported.

From what I understand we failed to meet your expectations, both in product quality and the way we handle your disappointment. For this there are many reasons, but I won’t repeat them as almost all of them are listed in the various replies given in this topic. Also I feel that excuses and explanations is not what you want to hear.

Clearly we never set out to build a company to disappoint people and every time we do, we feel bad and hope there are ways to make things right again. We’ve been repairing, returning, swapping and taking Fairphones 1’s back ever since we started shipping them. And we learned a lot from this, as you can read here:

But there are times where we can not make good what is wrong.

We made the Fairphone 2 with all the lessons learned from the Fairphone 1 in mind. And at one point we have to let go of the Fairphone 1. In your case it seems that repairing was no option for our repair partner. If we are going to keep going as a company, we have to rely on our partners to make judgements for us. For example: if our transport partner returns a package as undeliverable, we are also not able to see locally if there really was no letterbox.

That does not mean we do not care about of supporters; it means that we are a real company and we are limited by resources and time in the amount of effort we can give to supporting a product and the people who bought it.

As said before, I am really sorry you feel this way and I think I can speak for our entire team if I say that we wished things were different. Sadly we can’t do anything for you in this case.


I’m owning my FP2 now for 2 Months, 2 Weeks and 4 Days (that’s what ist tells me), so I don’t have much of experience with FP in general (despite some battery issues)
But keep in mind: For some good reason FP is delivering their phones without charger. That’s fine since nearly everyone owns a USB charger. But then FP cannot blame a buyer to use a wrong charger/cable!

Please rethink!


Since it was the coating or mantling of the usb port then mechanical stress broke the usb compartment itself. Poor-quality of a single 15 cent usb port that never could be replaced by warranty after 18 months ? Yes, of course. Did FP ever promised to be more accomodating than other producers ? Of course not. The only lesson we can learn here is that all depends from the support team from the very first contact . Or as the “Kaleu” said in his darkest moment in his submarine, Das Boot: “Good men, thats all, only good men (saved us from drowning)”. A good supporter would have had saved Frank from the repair company. Even with a broken FP1 but a fair treatment maybe Frank would have again chosen next generations FP2. Now he is lost for FP.

Unfortunately Douwe exactly told us - more or less - that the lesson learned at FP was to let go for more support team members and/or more qualified support. However I am sure that FP2 especially its modularity was a clear decision not to enhance support for end customers, especially when it is only about FP1 from the past. But … suport is not only reduced for FP1. Think about it when you read again “Ooops, FP support for FP2 doesnot look in good shape these days”.

So you rely on a partner that has 12 years of experience with general smartphones and 2 years of experience with Fairphone that is not able to solder a USB-connector. There are at least 3 companies in the Forum that are able to repair the device and there is even a youtube video where people get taught how to do this within 2 hours. If you partner is not able to this with the great experience they have, well then I would suggest to find a new partner.
Speaking with your words, if a company is not able to deliver a package even though there is a letterbox (which is used by other companies), then this a problem of the company not of the recipient.
But I guess it is more plausible that you just don’t want them to repair the device because you make more money out of selling the spare parts.

Seeing this whole process with some distance it really feels like a break up. Isn’t that [quote=“douwe, post:30, topic:20270”] … we have to let go …
[/quote] something that people say if they break up with each other. At first I was really angry about the supports treatment of my case. Talking with that “All your fault attitude”, blaming me and only me for the damage (improper handling, external cause). Second I felt really disappointed that fairness and sustainability is not what Fairphone stands for. Taking the way of dumping a working piece of electronic just because the already known weak point broke down, instead of repairing it is neither fair nor sustainable. And lastly there is regret. Regret for having supported a company for which 2 years of costumers support is already to much.

If you want to break up, it is ok. But there is no “Let’s stay friends” and I am also not interested in getting together again sometime in the future. As I’ve said, my Fairphone experience ends here.


This is the list in question: :slight_smile:


Thank you for adding this information.


I totally agree on that it is easy to understand the obstacles on the way, but not the ignorance. When the support tells you that this is not going to happen with FP2, or we are to busy with the launch of FP2 to help you, I, as someone among the first 10000 buyers, loose my faith in the company. The company is the staff, and the customers, and our belief in the project. And if that is not worth anything the project will die.
That’s when I decided to not buy a FP2. Now, I’ll try to stick with my FP1 for as long as it works, which is does, most of the days. 2 years and 8 months is not so bad. But I have been on my way to buy other phones many times.


While I agree with @FrankM in many ways, we also have to be aware of the timeline … they needed a phone with a “open minded” Chinese ODM and they took what they could get. It was not about design, it was mainly about materials.

The more important flaw:

Fairphone never involved the users in the design or decision making process. The FP1 was a finished product, the FP2 was a finished product.

If somebody would have shown me the designs of the FP1 or the FP2, I would have been able to point out a few things. But I never had the chance. I just want to be able to comment on a design, they don’t have to implement my ideas, but I want to be able to give a comment before it gets produced.

I can understand that they have their own ideas and that they all must fit under a certain goal, but a open review never hurts.

Also all the ODM contracts are unknown. I’m not sure who is responsible for possible design faults and how much buffer there is to fix those. Also it would be interesting to know how much power Google and the SoC manufacturers have over the ODMs. Some designs only make sense because Google seems to have some power over the ODMs (the eMMMc is always on the mainboard). Samsung plays way too nice with Google, they would have the power to change things, but they don’t do it, so I assume lots of patents are involved.


I received two emails from the support last week they contained the following two statements:

We will now inform our service centre that they can proceed with the repair of your Fairphone.

Your phone is as good as new and ready for you! We are sending your package out today.

@Douwe It this supposed to be funny?

Dear Frank, I am not part of the support team and I do not know what has happened there. But I can check for you. Please assume good faith.

No need. I got the device back not repaired as I requested. But my rating of the support just went from bad to horrible. Is the support really that lazy and only has 1 text module independent of the outcome of the support process?