Phone extremely laggy and slow, screen flickering, simply tons going wrong!

Hi all,

I realize this may be difficult to respond to due to its generality but for months my phone often takes ages to respond even just to pause music or a podcast, open the camera, using Whatsapp, working with e-mails in the default Email client etc. Also when using Email it crashes EVERY time I delete a mail from the main menu… It also takes up to five minutes to boot up 75% of the time, either getting stuck on the blue screen both before or while the fairphone logo is there. Just had screen flickering begin this past week too, which is when my patience wore out. There was no event or specific start to all this as far as I can recall…

Despite that I really want to love my Fairphone (only got it Summer of 2014!), all this is seriously making me regret my purchase at this point…!

Many thanks for any tips you may have!


So true. :wink:

First of all, I assume your speed problems are always present? Or can you pinpoint certain circumstances, like being in the range of many overlapping WiFi hotspots, being in the shower, or he moon being in the third house of the capricorn? (Only semi-kidding here: try to think out of the box, but don’t open your mind too much, or your brain will fall out.)

Let’s check the easy parts first: try hard rebooting and check if the problem persists. Probably try rebooting multiple times. It might even be interesting to disable WiFi and take out your SIM, but that might also be tech-superstition.

If the problem persists, try clearing the cache (e.g., in factory mode or with the help of TitaniumBackup) and see if the problem persists. If so, try to find out in the apps menu which apps are running, and if they take up much memory. Try clearing the cache of some apps which are definetly lagging, e.g. the Camera app, the e-mail app, Whatsapp, etc. If the problem persists, try to remember which apps you installed last, and check if de-installing is an option to try out if the problem goes away.

If this does not yet lead you to salvation, please provide us with some more info: the OS version you are running, if you have encrypted your phone or not, if you have installed Google Apps, if you have applied the unified storage update, if you are running your apps from a SD card or if they are stored in the internal storage (or, if you did not apply the unification, in the phone storage). It would also be interesting if you phone’s memory is especially full, or you have transfer hundereds of MB to it on a regular basis (e.g., lots of music or films every now and then.)

We still might find some software problem. Even the screen flickering might be caused by something in software. Something of a last resort would be a factory reset. And if that does not help, you can still send your phone to FP support and let them find out if it’s a hardware-related problem. They are really customer friendly (I got my phone fixed on warranty twice by now).

Disclaimer: Whatever you do to your phone, it’s worth running a backup first. And don’t use the preinstalled Backup and Restore app for a proper backup.


Wow, tons of helpful tips! Thank you so much! I am running Android version 4.2.2. and yes I installed Google Apps, and have done all recommended updates although I do not recall doing a unified storage update (do not know what it is or how to do it…) My internal memory is indeed very full (too many podcasts) so that might be taxing things a bit. I’ll try clearing that up, clearing caches, checking for memory hogs and of course backing up. Thanks again and I’ll let you know what comes of it. Any further insights regarding my android version etc would be much appreciated!

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Try looking into the Fairphone Updater App. It will tell you wich Fairphone OS version you are running. (I would guess you are on 1.6, unless you updated to 1.8 in the short timeframe when this FPOS update was available OTA. If you are, and have not applied the Unified Storage Update, you should see an option in the FP Updater app to do so, as I recall.)

I was one the of those who updated to 1.8 actually, and I see no Unified Storage Update option so I must have done that as well. Moving 6GB of podcasts and dumping the cache of everything seems to have helped a bit actually but I cannot say for sure things are officially better. I am surprised that so long after having realized the bugs in 1.8 that a further update has not been issued!

Thanks again for your help!

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Since you got your phone last summer I guess it came with a unified storage, but you can easily check: to Settings > Storage and check if you only have internal storage (and sd card if you have one) or also a phone storage.

About 1.8, I think the new update will come in a few weeks.