I’m too biased at the moment to vote. I could experience the Pixel 6a from a friend for 2 weekends. The contrast is vast. FP4 is a decent midrange device, if it was released 5 years ago. There are too many things just not that great or good enough. Yes, FP has a different mission. I’m not saying FP should be at the same level. I’m saying the contrast between the technology offered is quite stark. Ranging from simple things like the vibration motor and microphones to more complex things like the software quality, camera and display. It feels like there were some corners cut that made the device a bit too much ‘mehhh’. But I do have high hopes for the FP5. I think that device will nail it.
I only have the FP3 but pretty sure there’d be no difference for me.
1. On the Fair trade side satisfied
2. On user repairability satisfied
3. On the sustainability side unsatisfied
4. On the tech side satisfied _ I expected it to be a bit old _ it’s written in the specs
I bought it for the same reasons. The chipset is indeed in the spec sheet. The issues I mention are not listed there. I’m just saying, I think they could and should do a bit better. Some of the issues are also rooted in software and QA of the releases, that affects my opinion as well. My phone has rebooted out of the blue twice in the past 3 days. I didn’t see that since I had a OnePlus One back in the day.
It’s great I can replace the battery. But when I replace it with a fresh battery in front of friends they frown at me and tell me they have a higher screentime and can still last the rest of the day/night. So yeah, that cool party trick doesn’t go well either when I think the FP can shine.
Phone calls with colleagues also doesn’t go well, often robotic effects in the connection. Noise cancellation is awful, can’t have a decent call with family members either. The list goes on, in the #wiki is the list of know and reproducible issues.
All in all, yes, the phone mostly works. But relatively speaking it just doesn’t cut it. I can’t wait for the FP5, because I have to switch. I have a nonfunctional phone at the moment, which for work is unacceptable. In that sense FP didn’t complete their mission of reducing waste in my case.
Well, like I said. It’s mostly because I used the Pixel 6a for a few days. Before that I was satisfied with the same complaints. I have to get used to the FP4 again, and if some issues may finally be resoloved I can wait out the FP5 just fine.
I selected “satisfied”, but I find it quite hard to narrow it down to one feeling.
I’m quite happy with the FP4, especially compared to other phones in the same category. For my usecase, thankfully, most of the annoying bugs don’t matter.
But I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the phone to friends or family, outside the circle I’m “tech support” for already.
Seeing the lack of communication from Fairphone as a company, the unnecessary QA errors, that should (in some cases) be caught by a simple CI system, and the awful support response times, doesn’t fill me with confidence.
Appointing some kind of community manager, to act as a bridge between what’s happening on this forum and the company, would go a long way.
I know, but I’ve been here for almost a year now, and I’ve yet to witness any kind of “community management”.
Even for those big problems, like people bricking their phones one after the other, increasing the load on support in the process, there hasn’t been really any clear communication.
Instead, the community is left in the dark.
Some more updates about what’s being worked on and in general if Fairphone could talk a bit more with the community, that would be nice
I’m neutral on this. There are many aspects I sincerely like, and then there are things that are just… disappointing.
I love the fair trade and the sustainability aspects, as well as the repairability. The hardware is okay. Sure, it could have a slightly more powerful SoC (like SD 778G), different display (AMOLED with hole-punch camera), but even in this state it’s perfectly fine and I have no worries that it will hold for at least 5 years with my usage.
However, I don’t really love the software side. Before owning FP4, I was using Moto Z2 Play. Motorola is known for their almost vanilla Android experience with some additional handy features (Moto Actions and Moto Display), so the comparison with it makes a lot of sense. With my Moto Z2 Play, I didn’t have to worry about my microphones sounding like garbage or the volume being too low. I didn’t have to worry about not being able to pay using NFC. I didn’t have to worry about not getting GPS fix. I didn’t have to worry about random updates messing with the UI or the camera quality because it passed through QC. I didn’t have to worry about the proximity sensor being utterly useless. I didn’t have to worry about apps crashing because of some underlying issue with the camera API.
And that’s kind of tolerable for me because I’m tech-savvy and I can usually figure out what’s the problem and how to deal with it (or at least what to report). But it’s also a reason why I wouldn’t be comfortable with recommending this phone to a common, non-tech-savvy user. Because from their point of view, the phone is just broken. So they contact the support… and here we go.
I have absolutely no freaking idea why they don’t just have a public bug tracker like they did with FP2. Instead, we have a closed support system where they insist that you discuss all your issues in a single thread (which is just plain stupid from my point of view), and a community managed wiki page with common issues but with absolutely no feedback from FP employees. This state creates an utter mess where people naturally first come here but we have to constantly remind them to also #contactsupport. So we have this awesome collaborative environment at our disposal where you can search for already reported issues and you can simply +1 the topic or add a message that you have the same problem without creating a duplicate topic. But FP is like nope, we would rather have all users report the same damn problem individually over and over again. No wonder it takes them that long to answer.
Wait, do you mean that FP4 development is not in-house while FP2 is, or the other way around (FP4 is in-house while FP2 isn’t)? In any case, I don’t really see the reason for not having a public bug tracker. If it’s in-house, then it’s a no brainer as it would dramatically speed up communication. If it’s not in-house, then at least duplicate issues could be avoided and they could communicate it with the developers more effectively with more information.
Sure, I wouldn’t complain if e.g. security patches came monthly on the 5th.
I wouldn’t complain if new major Android versions would be available within a month or two after the version was released by Google.
I wouldn’t complain if support would answer other people’s request more promptly (I never had to contact support).
I wouldn’t complain if I had to wait 0.1s for something to happen instead of maybe 0.2s or 0.3s.
I wouldn’t complain if I had 458 GB of 512 GB free instead of “just” 74GB of 128 GB.
So yes, there are plenty of things that could be better.
Still, it does what I need and it does it well enough.
I have a good solution for you, live with a FP2 for a few days, and you’ll find the FP4 incredible. When I go from my FP2 to my family member’s FP4, I have the impression to go from a broken bicyle to a sports car.
(Of course this is only half-serious, I’m not seriously suggesting you should inflict to yourself to use a FP2)
I’m shared on this.
Having seen and taken in hand the FP2 (that I own), the FP3 and the FP4, I can only say they made constant improvements on the hardware part. For this, I do believe they’ll do at least as good for FP5.
But for the software part, and the support… perhaps selling phones with seemingly better hardware (because it only feels laggy next to a pixel 6, perhaps we should reconsider what laggy means, the pixel 6 is IMHO just too much for most peoples, as most flagships) may help selling more of them… Otherwise, I don’t see how they can improve the software (and I include of course camera quality) and the support…
The Pixel 6 might be, but the Pixel 6a is Google’s midrange device, the comparison seems fair to me.
(obviously not talking about the fairtrade aspect here, which is why most of us are here)
Updating to a current version of Android would be a start. I have the direct comparison between stock Android 11 on a family members FP4 and mine running Android 13.
I wouldn’t say it’s running flawless all the time, but it just feels so much quicker on Android 13.
Good point, had forgotten the difference. Nevertheless, it’s still a pixel, and it benefits from Google’s high software quality
Sure, you may be right, but are they on the same OS? I’ve seen very different performance just by switching from FPOS to FP Open OS on the FP2, probably because it junked out GApps from the processes, from the memory and from the storage (and I’m not talking about LOS).
And then, I meant I don’t see how releasing the FP5 could help them improve software quality, because to improve the software, you have to spend time and resources working on the software, not releasing a new device. This is why I think the FP5 may not change much to improve general quality (which is mainly software quality IMO, since hardware is quite okay), apart from (perhaps) selling more devices to allow to have more ressources to work on software quality. Sorry for being unclear