Software Update: 3.A.0129.20210805 (unknown caller and zero brightness bugs)

I’m not so sure about that… Apple certainly does a good job supporting their devices for a long period. But even Google didn’t want to try that, until now since they have their own SoC now. Fairphone is doing the impossible already. Let’s appreciate that and focus on solutions. Like e.g. advocate for the beta tester community, so that we can make sure issues like these won’t happen that easily anymore.


Just to be clear, we are discussing hotfixes…

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11 posts were split to a new topic: Unknown caller with Three UK

I did not read all messages here, just the headline!

But I am also affected by both problems:

  • brightness is very often automatically reduces to zero
  • all incoming calls are shown as “Unknown” (Vodafone in Germany)

This update really has some bad problems!
@anon27553248 Please release a fix for both problems!


Is any date for an update assessable. These issuses are nerve-racking day by day -.-


No real date, but it is supposed to be in the next regular update, which normally should appear in the next days.


unknown caller + zero brightness +

Cant answer Phonecalls when Keylocked

Welcome to the Fairphone community.

Could you please explain in detail, when and how the problem occurs? With my FP3 it works, when the phone is locked.

Phone rings, display stays dark
Side buttons=reject
Swiping=no effect

Works perfectly with my phone. You are swiping up?

If you have zero brightness in the day then yes you can’t react with the screen. I had a similar issue and had to remove the battery as i couldn’t tell if I could even switch the phone off.

But zero brightness doesn’t mean the screen is switched off, so it should react.


It was so dark, maybe my sunglasses didn’t help :slight_smile:

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@anon27553248 Please forward to the appropriate person(s) that customers are unsatisfied with this testing and have the impression that fairphone either detectes issues but does fail to communicate them effectively to customers, or that these tests are not sufficient to detect even widespread & considerable issues like unexpected loss of all local contacts or dysfunctional display of calling number (this forum thread). Please also add customers’ solution suggestions, e.g.

  • For communication to customers: In the update notification screen

    you could put a clickable link to a support article telling what are expected changes, when the update became available to customers, and listing potential & confirmed limitations, side effects, and bugs. With that, each user can easily decide whether sufficient time went by to detect potential issues and whether they are personally perceived as severe or not, thus whether to update already or not yet, and what preparing steps they take. Alternatively to a support ticket, you could also continue with forum threads, but please add a little more info in the initial post and update it so it’s like a “sticky summary” that saves users from tedious reading through 253 posts like here.
    A thread like this is a communication in the rigth direction, but for some of the updates (e.g. 6/2021), I did not find the according thread within 10 minutes time box - and quite a big number of users do not at all come up with the idea to search the forum. Thus the suggestion with the link.
    For example, I don’t care about unknown calling number but the possibility to reduce screen brightness is important to me to keep eyes accustomed to darkness, or I would have done a fresh backup of my local contacts directly before upgrading from Android 9 to 10 (in fact, I was not even aware it’s an upgrade, I thought it’s just an update).
  • For provision of updates: Split security updates from application updates, so a user could install only security updates instantly but wait with application update until a fix for personally severe issues exists (e.g. display becoming “too dark”). Of course, this splitting does not work in 100% of cases, e.g. if both are intertwined - but I highly doubt e.g. the display brightness settings update is security relevant.
  • For testing: Let a considerable share of faiphone staff update & use the phone for a week in everyday usage, and add a beta tester phase to include more countries & carriers & languages, see 🇩🇪 Display Helligkeit nach update mal an, mal aus - #17 by AnotherElk

You’re asking a lot, but you never know some of it may even happen :slight_smile:

Personally, I am not asking much - just to forward a summary consolidating complaints, dissatisfaction reports and suggestions expressed by several users in forum threads I did read in around 2-3 hours. Of course, this is at the one hand a service / support for the fairphone staff, at the other hand, bringing that topic again onto the responsible’s mind makes improvements more likely than not reminding about it - and I’d clearly benefit of improvements, just like all other FP3 + FP4 users.

Also the solution ideas do - after the one-time organisational change - not cause much additional ongoing workload: Adding a link and copy & pasting the DEV’s changelog shall not take more than 5 minutes per update, so once per 3 months. Fairphone staff would use their mobiles as usual - just with the update earlier than customers, and in case that causes too much productivily loss for fairphone, it clearly means same productivily loss for customers in the current process :wink: Beta testers do receive an update just earlier - like the carriers already do, so the process does exist and considering the sheer amount of carriers the process shall already be massively automated so extending it by beta testers shall only cause minimal additional workload.

As a side note, the measurements are not unusual: An easily accessible changelog, not only naming 2-3 highlighs but more detailed what was touched and naming possibly breaking changes / incompatibilities, as well as internal testing and tests on external/customers explicit test systems (often in context of “early access”) are good practice in software industry, e.g. for “big” software like operating systems or integration engines, but also small software teams, see release notes of e.g. Locus maps or KeePass, and also hardware-bound software like Fritz!OS updates. All of these examples are not that much different from Android for Fairphones.


Sounds like you could have an involved chat with support@fairphone dot com :slight_smile:

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As mentioned above, it should [sic] be possible to restart by holding down the power button for 10 seconds or so.

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Yes I’m aware of how to turn the phone off :slight_smile: but a) i couldn’t tell if it was off as I couldn’t see anything and b) turning on left it still dark etc.

So removing the battery was the only was to completely disturb the display settings ?? and even that didn’t work well either ???

No, keeping the power button pressed for 10 seconds should force the reboot of the phone in whatever state the phone is, it’s like long-pressing the power button of a computer forces its shutdown. Try it out yourself :slight_smile: