Software update: FP4.FP4G.A.170.20220920

I think it more of the “Fairphone don’t test to the ability that is comprehensive” and so by default things are missed and the Beta team are a load of user ameteurs, well I mean I am :slight_smile: I’m sure there are a few far more experienced people back stage but resources clearly don’t line up with the job.

Either way, Fairphone should start properly testing stuff, I guess we can all aggree on that :smirk:

That stupid little error in the install script, that would have been immediatelly caught, if some had tried to use them even once. And they managed to make the same mistake twice :man_facepalming:
Still not fixed, 6 weeks later … :roll_eyes:


Just don’t like ‘should’

Be really usefull if they ‘could’ and
Brilliant if they ‘did’

At least I didn’t have to beta test the mines and production lines, not that I ever intended to, or am going to sign up for that.

Resources are hard fought over and it’s an increasingly painful battle for some.

For an error like the one I’m talking about, there’s just no excuse, especially if it happens twice.

I’m not a developer, but even I test my shell scripts before I put them into “production”, you can expect paid developers to check their code, that’s just not professional otherwise.

Every issue that doesn’t get found in 5 minutes of due dilligence can potentially increase the load on support several times over. There’s also a good business argument to be made for testing your stuff.


Guess thats the obstacle of outsourcing development. less control what is done and the developer most likely dont use all the phones they work on, and than a small beta group of normal user cant test everything…

I cant remember so many major issues with FP2 OS where the development was inhouse, the beta testing available through the forum and a direct contact to the developer through the public bug tracker…

Still I need to come back to small, because I guess that FP just cannot hire and pay the amount of inhouse developer they would need to maintain 3 devices at once…


Sure, a developer’s salary is much higher than that of a customer support employee, but as far as I can tell, outsourcing development and in turn hiring more support doesn’t seem to work either.
We all now how long support takes to answer, those are people too, and I don’t have the feeling they are working under a healthy / sustainable load at the moment.

There needs to be a push for proper (automated) testing, there are too many issues that just shouldn’t happen if you have the right processes in place.

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Completely agree there need to be a re-thinking and everything needs to be considered here, because yes I see support staff that is not capable of doing a good job, as most likely the workload is just too high and they cant think out of the box and to get rid, they either Diagnose a hardware issue too fast and forward to Cordon or refer to the forum (best example lately is the BT earphones that were not working…). Either way its out of there to do list…

Overall thats tricky to get aligned: You need new devices somehow to earn the money you need to maintain older versions for years. With each new device you need more capacities to maintain, so you need even more money. Overall I see similar struggle as Shiftphones has… Many devices=no capacities to manage=bad or no updates and so on…

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You are right, hadn’t thought about the multiple device aspect of it.
In that case, I think it would make even more sense to have everything in-house. At the moment there are 3 separate teams working on supporting the different phones and there is probably a limited amount of mindshare between them.
Why should everybody be doing their own little thing if you could save ressources by standardizing some of the processes and sharing expertise, which is way easier if everybody is working in the same “team”.
Why isn’t something like the FP Camera open source, so the community can help out?

I don’t expect things to change significantly, at least not until the next phone, but I think we (and Fairphone as well) can expect the devs to do proper testing, if normal people can find the issues in 5 min of usage, that software shouldn’t have been shipped (and the factory images shouldn’t increase the likelyhood of :brick:s either).

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I honestly wish they’d take a completely different approach to software support: do proper development for every major-update (A11->A12, etc.) and make the customers (us) pay for it. In the past, this was also common in computer industry: a new software version was paid for. I think it’s quite obvious: they want to change the phone industry, e.g. by making phones last longer. But of course it leads to economic disaster if they produce a phone once and then have to or want to keep the software up to date for seven years without monetary compensation. The more different models they have to support in parallel, the more expensive it becomes. So they outsource the development, which is not conducive to quality.
So: a fee for each major update and patch the old versions “only” with security updates for, say, two years. This way, no one is forced to pay for a new veraion right away and they can finance the development of major updates.

Have you seen how long people can go without updating their systems. I can’t even quantify the number of times I had to explain to friends and family, you have to update your system.

If you make people pay for it, that creates the completely wrong incentive and you’ll just end up with fewer secure systems out there.

We need automatic security updates for as long as possible without people having to think about it.


I understand the reasoning well, of course. However, I assume that Fairphone does not outsource the development in order to earn even more profit for the shareholders. It is more likely to be an economic constraint to keep their promise. They don’t see a cent for the FP2, which they still support, but they are still working on it.

And I think the FP-affine audience would be quite understanding, they have deliberately chosen a phone with a slightly different business model. I guess @amoun might have a slightly different view on this, which is obviously OK and many share his view, but for me and many others (not everyone) longevity is an important argument alongside fairer pay for miners and factory workers.
And a certain time of security updates is still more than what most others (apart from Apple and Google(?)) offer. Of course, an unlimited supply of security updates would be desirable.

I think it could pay off in several ways: for FP, because they could better influence in-house development, because they would have to provide less customer support, because they could better afford longer software support economically, and because they would (not to be neglected) get better reviews.
And for users I also see two benefits: on the one hand (hopefully) better quality software and on the other hand also a certain entitlement to better software. If I pay for an update, I can rightly expect decent quality.

At the moment, I don’t advise anyone to buy a Fairphone. For decent software, you have to go to LOS, iodé or CalyxOS, depending on your taste and preferences. That would be OK if, for example, Calyx didn’t keep stressing that they don’t yet know how long they can support FP4. With LOS, it also depends on volunteers who do a good job but can’t/must not necessarily sustain it for several years. So there I have no assurance of having good software permanently either.

In the end, I’m afraid we can stop discussing about this aspect here, because FP would not choose such a model and too few people share my view on this, I guess.

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There isn’t that one specific person who buys a Fairphone, people buy them for a multitude of reasons. Even if you would be correct and people chose the company solely based on business model, that doesn’t necessarily mean they understand the need to update their phones and that they should fund something they might not even care about.
A lot of people on this forum care / know about the technical aspects of owning / maintaining a phone, but most people just use them until something breaks, and I completely understand that.

In my opinion, the solution needs to be the other way round. Every manufacturer needs to guarantee a certain timeframe in which their devices get updated.
If everyone has to do it, you can’t cheap out by just not updating your customers devices. That needs to happen for us to reduce e-waste, not essentially sunsetting devices by building a paywall between updates.


I would happily agree, as you can read in my post. Maybe at this point I wasn’t clear enough about this, but I hoped that it would be clear from the rest of my post.

Well, I can agree here, too. But the world is not in a state I would like it to be, which makes this desirable, but unrealistic. And even if someone, say the EU, took an attempt on this, everybody (I think here it is OK to generalize) knows how painfully long things take. (And I say this as someone who works for an authority strongly linked to European institutions (no, not Frontex).)

So, in the meantime, I would prefer another solution.

But anyway, I think we need not dive into this as it is OT, I’m afraid.

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Yeah if Fairphone starts charging for updates then I’m out. There is no way I’m paying Fairphone for updates when I can get them for free if I buy a Pixel 6a. At a faster pace, too!

The fact that the Pixel 6a is currently being sold for half of the price of a Fairphone 4 in my local store isn’t exactly winning me any points to be honest.


Understandable for most I imagine as money is a focus of having power, but luckily Fairphone shows another valuable asset, concienciousness in caring, which is inversly proportional to the power of money in the general population ~ not a current viable business model.

And for all the talk, Fairphone is a business. So although not a charity charging for updates does appear to be a crazy idea :slight_smile:


Just to add a number 5 developer needed to maintain the FP2!

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To be honest, I have my doubts as to whether it takes 5 full-time employees to support one model…
You have to say that to yourself and then consider whether you really want to believe it.

I dont do the job so I cant judge.

I don’t care too much about the upgrade from Android 11 to 12. However, I can no longer use corporate resources on my FP4 because the security patch is too old, so I do have an issue with the patching taking too long.
Why are there no rich filantropists that can secure FairPhone sufficient resources to fund a decent software dev/maintenance team?


I’m almost in the same boat due to the security policies enforced in my work profile. However, I prefer them to take their time and focus on a quality release rather than a botched up release.

Best you can do is #contactsupport, then your complain is noted.