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

my first language is not English. Sorry if I forget a “one of the” in front of “basic function”.

Still, do you really want to argue about the fact, that a phone without the capability to show the incoming number / name (if its a known caller) should be assigned as broken instead of working? Even if that means, you can’t call back a missed call because you only see “unknown caller”.

Those workarounds are reasonable for a certain amount of time. But the acceptable meantime is finite, especially in a professional work space. The only thing I complained in this thread is the fact, that Fairphone does not bother to release an estimated timeline. If they would announce, that the fix will be rolled out in December, many users would jump the ship. This way without any information, many users are having the false expectation of a quick fix. And nearly 2 months after the last update, I can’t judge this to be quick anymore.

Concerning the mentioned workarounds:

  • I use a second SIM in my FP3 for work. This SIM has no mobile date enabled. That’s why I can’t use a second SIM for mobile data only while my private SIM (Vodafone) is set to 2G.
  • My SIM / provider does not enable the option to disable “Voice over LTE”.
  • There is no more 3G in Germany, thats why disabling 4G/LTE equals 2G mobile date speed.

I’m constantly toggeling on/off the 4G option for mobile data for nearly 2 months. I simply lost my patience, e.g. when I forget to toggle back an someone calls me. And this is a very basic function I expect to be working on any phone device with an attached display.


This shouldn’t even be necessary, as the older OS version is still there on the phone after an update, and a mechanism to revert back to it exists by design for A/B devices like the Fairphone 3/3+.

Lately, the question is whether the mechanism would work as intended … I’ve seen it not work for an /e/ user a while ago and in the meantime for a LineageOS user, too.
Fairphone OS? Who knows, either nobody dared to try or nobody dared to tell …


I also have remarks about the Pixel 3. That device isn’t perfect. And yeah there are some questionable design choices in the FP4 (no WiFi-6, no persistent notifications). Asking questions about that isn’t wrong. I might send the phone back, that’s possible. At least I gave it an honest chance, and I will. Based on benchmarks the device should be just as powerful for regular use as my Pixel 3. But the camera will be a downgrade, as long as it makes doable pictures in unideal environments I’ll be fine with it.

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Quite interesting, but please get back to topic. Thanks…


Hi @anon93683458

Noting the subsequent criticism that your post was off topic this topic has become a arena where people have chosen to have a go at Fairphone.

I see no reason why your post, as a response to such is off topic in that area.

It is difficult to find a way of responding where the odd person doesn’t feel the need to be a bit bossy.

So thank you for the effort to add some perspective.

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Why do you bring up 2 subjects here that have been already put to rest in those topics? You’re just gaslighting this forum… I think it’s best if everyone just ignores you. I wrote more, but deleted it. You don’t deserve this attention anymore. It’s unhealthy for this community.

Thank you, I appreciate your kind words. :slight_smile:

What I wrote correlates to the design philosophy I referenced - there are numerous benefits to using components with tried and proven technology. I believe that they’ve chosen their components wisely and strike a good balance.

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Hi All,

There has been one question frequently asked in this thread which is more or less as follows: When Fairphone has acknowledged that they have found out the root cause a few weeks ago then why is there such a delay in release?

If your questions are similar to this the I would like to give a small insight as to what the actual process is.

For any ODM, even if it is just one line change of code which forces them to create a new build, the fingerprint of that build changes. When the fingerprint changes ODMs are forced to go through a full cycle of certification and get the approval from Google before the build is ready for a release.

This is what could be causing the delay in next release and I personally feel we need to wait until all these process gets completed successfully.



Interesting, much appreciated.

That would leave the question what’s so hard about communicating where the update is in the process.

And thinking about it, this is a massive wasted chance for communication overall …

"An update’s journey to the phone"
Pick up the current example of an eagerly-awaited update, explain the work put into an update, the steps taken by those involved, where delays can happen, how updates get installed on A/B devices like the Fairphone 3/3+.

"Phones and carriers: What could possibly go wrong (literally)?"
Pick up the current Vodafone Germany example and explain the interaction of phone vendors and carriers as well as possible pitfalls.

"How much AI is on your phone?"
Pick up the current adaptive brightness bug and explain the term AI, why it is used for almost every simple algorithm nowadays, which things on the phone go beyond simple algorithms, possible problems.

These blog posts almost write themselves (not really, of course :wink: ).


How many times did you note a thread going off topic? And now, just because it was me who did the recent remark, it is fine for you? An interesting, but no unexpected strategy…

Hello everyone,

I just set this thread on slow-mode over the weekend (for now), as the discussion seems to be heating up again and turning to personal interactions instead of discussing the topic (see the thread). This gives everyone time to cool down and rethink before posting.

As I already posted in another thread:

  • Just consider, that all the postings here are - in general - statements of a personal opinion of that user. Therefore add the (often unwritten) words “In my opinion …” to every posting.

  • As it is an exchange of opinions, it is not necessary to answer. Making a statement and expressing ones own opinion might be enough, even if someone disagrees.

  • There are many reasons, why one user comes to an individual conclusion. Even if one disagrees, one should respect that different opinion and the reasons. There is no right or wrong in having different feelings and opinions on a topic.

  • Trying to have the final say will always and only result in endless threads turning in circles while heating up ever more.
    Therefore please ponder: Do I really have something new to add to the discussion or is it just to try and make the other one understand what I am saying. If you feel, that it’s trying to get the message through, then it’s turning in circles; unfortunately.
    And I do have some extensive first hand experience to that regard. But in the end it feels great, if I managed to just stop and not post a reply, repeating myself.


Unfortunaly I’ve got affected by both bugs.
Fairphone Support is just replying with standard prewritten textes to the Ticket I’ve opened.

IMHO It doens’t seem like we will see any Fix on this happening, before the next regular Update will be rolled out - and if so - this will be my last Fairphone Device.

I just can’t afford my device changing into an expensive brick for 3 months cause of some major issues, the manufacturer wont solve in an appropriate Timeframe. Nor will I recommend rolling out devices like that to any company.

The whole communication on this topic from Fairphone’s site is just the rotten cherry on the top. Within a few days after the issue has been reported, officials tell us the root cause has been detected - followed by weeks of silence while the affected users beg for a fix.


just maybe instead of spreading your zen wisdom, you could use your power as an moderator to drag a Fairphone representative into this thread in order to make a statement. Like I wrote before, if we would get an estimated timeline for the role out of the update to fix the last update, there wouldn’t be so much frustration among your community.


Hi I’m pretty sure you being rude to @BertG is more than a little off topic, and the power as a moderator would be to point that out if one should choose. As for suggesting what a moderator should do, moderators are in no way affiliated to Fairphone any more that you or I.

Having said that, if I had the problems you sem to have I would ahve contacted Fairphone before I made such a rather frustarted comment.

as for

frustration among your community

Note this is your community as much as it is @BertG
and this thread was created by a Fairphone employee as in the first post, so I am sure they are aware of the frustrations.

Just in case you think I am trying to dissuade you from posting your frustrations, I am not, but there is a specific topic for just that and it’s pretty clear that everyone would like a date on when this is to be fixed, let’s hope it’s in the next few days so this thread can die.


Having the problem with my FP3 (callya) not showing the phone number with an incoming call I had somebody from the technics department of vodafone on the hotline today. He blames fairphone for not cooperating with vodafone to solve the problem.
Hope the next update can fix the problem.


Email from Fairphone Support:

We realize that the Caller ID and/or Adaptive brightness issue has been affecting you, and we thus would like to share some updates about the situation with you:

We now have a confirmed timeframe for our next software update! The software update is due to be released in early November and will include a fix for the Caller ID and Adaptive brightness issues.


Hi everyone,

We realize that the situation for those affected by the Caller ID and Adaptive Brightness issues has been quite frustrating. So, we’d like to share some updates and a bit more information in this post.

We can now confirm that our next software update will be released early November. This update will include a fix for the Caller ID issue and we’ll reverse the recent changes made to Adaptive Brightness.

Some of you have asked why we could not release the fix earlier. We found the root cause, but it is modem related, so the release process is more complex. We needed to do more tests and do the full cycle certification process (not only the Google Certification, but also the Operators Approvals process). Rolling back to the last working version, including the security update(s) means that we would still have to do the full cycle of tests and approvals.

Testing a new release means proceeding with some internal tests, running internal CTS (Compatibility Test Suite), and doing field testing in some specific countries to run non-regressions test cases. We haven’t done external beta testing for the Fairphone 3 (other than network compliance), but taking into account our own research and feedback from the community, our plan is to implement a beta testing program when we roll out Android 11. We are also aiming to do a staged roll out for Android 11.

To shed some light on how to go about applying new security patches for a new release, these are the steps involved:

  1. We get the source from Qualcomm/Android Open Source Project
  2. When a new security patch comes, it is based on the original Qualcomm/Android Open Source Project source, so we cannot directly apply all the changes in a simple manner.
  3. After resolving the conflicts, we have to test that it should not have any regression compared to the previous version.

Splitting security updates from application updates is technically doable but the cost would be significantly more, so for now we are combining both.

Hopefully this clarifies the process up a bit more. Once again, thank you very much for your feedback and sincere apologies to all Vodafone Germany users who have been affected by these issues.


Thanks for the insight.
So an update is hard to roll out quickly.

If there’s a bit of time involved in the process anyway, could switching the A/B slot back to the OS state prior to the update be made a part of internal testing?

If this generic A/B device procedure could be ensured to work on the A/B devices Fairphone 3 and 3+, and a short notice that this has been successfully tested could be included in update announcements, a situation like the current one would be much more manageable for users. Details are here … Can update 3.A.0129.20210805 be rolled back by switching the OS slot?.