I know that Wayne Huang said that they don’t have any more module upgrades in the roadmap (this in itself is a clear sign that something else is on roadmap…!), however, I think there are possibilities to upgrade the features/specs of the existing modules such as:
Improve the USB support to include USB 3.1 (max the SD632 supports) which obviously has speed benefits. Downloading modern storage sizes eg. for backup, over USB 2.0 takes quite a long time.
Add alternate mode for video out
Better vibration motor
No need to consider a higher resolution as the SD632 doesn’t support it
Even better optics and resolution
Optical image stabilisation
Better microphone for top module, maybe together they can be used for some spacial recording like OZO Audio.
There’s no point considering the core module as that will be the FP4, which maybe we can expect next year (if not, then what else is on the roadmap?).
I think FP3 is a solid device the way it is, the reason we want better specs is because we look at competitors which is not fair because fairphone competes only with itself at the moment i.e. there are no direct alternatives.
I doubt that big players like samsung or apple are the tree hugging types, they will ONLY listen to their customers and truth be told most people don’t care who and how has produced their device. It is also political, big companies are big because they pinch every penny to stay that way.
Except they wouldn’t because they’d still be using their existing Fairphones until they are irreparable and then if they want a new smartphone they will probably buy another Fairphone as it will probably still be the best option out there (well, except a secondhand Fairphone).
My suggestions aren’t about comparing with competitors; or, even if they are about making things “better” they are no different from what Fairphone already did by producing upgraded camera and speaker modules.
My suggestions are about improving utility and overcoming some of the things which some people have said are not good enough. I have not compared specs with other brands or anything like that, but I did check to see what the SD632 chipset could actually support because to me it makes sense to maximise the abilities of the most costly (money and primary resources) part of the phone.
And Fairphone must have some sort of roadmap, and if you don’t think that any more updates or a new phone are on that roadmap then what is?
I’m not fully into the design specs of the FP3, but hopefully FP did not again limit the bottom module to its least functionality for just having a more recent connection type than µUSB without also staying open to more feature advancements USB-C can offer.
It’s no problem for the 632 SoC, but even the FP2 SoC was not fully utilized.
I agree that there might not be enough pins in the connector, that will probably be a limiting factor, but why would they need a cor module update? The 632 definitely supports USB 3.1, although I actually don’t know for certain that it supports the USB-C video-out alternate modes I would be surprised if it didn’t because as far as I know this is more a driver and software issue than a hardware one (if the USB lanes exist, they can be used however the software wants to use them).
@Patrick1 unfortunately, AFAICT, that is what they did.
The bottom module does not contain much logic, just a few small parts like capacitors. Its point is mainly to be cheaply interchangeable when a connector breaks. The logic is all on the core module, and likely the missing lanes are simply not wired to the SoC on the core module, and/or the software support is not there.
The connector has 48 pins which is more than sufficient (the Fairphone 2 bottom module with similar functionality had only 18).
Well, they don’t listen to 10 or 100 people unfortunately, there have to be thousands of complaints and suggestions for them take notice.
It would be cool if they would take suggestions from community for their next phone like they did with the protective cases, for example I would rather have a shorter and fatter screen like Nokia 6.1, but they will make their own market research and act from it, so we will get stuck with popular choice.
Well, if the lanes aren’t even connected between the SoC and the connector to the bottom module then I agree with you, there is no way to get full USB 3.1 features. However, if those lanes are there then this would be a helpful upgrade and maximise the potential of the SoC.
About the idea of popular choice phone… I think that’s where an OLED screen upgrade probably wouldn’t be universally desired, as this is something which splits opinion and is quite subjective, except for the reduce power consumption, but I think that even that is only a marginal benefit these days isn’t it?