Stock Android (AOSP) Experiences

Correct, the Google Apps aren’t installed on Fairphone out of the box, you need to manually install them using a widget that has been supplied with the system. You can choose not to install them and go with something like f-droid or the Amazon app store instead (or just choose and pick APK installers from whatever shady website you can find ;))

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I have a couple of questions.

  1. Is it possible to go back to Fairphone OS after trying out the Stock Android?

  2. What are the major differences or limitations (if any) between the custom Fairphone OS and the Stock Android?
    (Example: no dual sim support, no side swipe or five panels etc.)

Hi @van

For your first question: the Fairphone Stock OS can be found here, as well with instructions to install.

As for your second question you might want to read this. The Fairphone OS is Stock Android with some extra widgets, apps and features. It’s open source and can be found here.

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How much additional system resources that consumes energy do the FP OS need?

Thank you for your answer and the detailed info.

For the first question though, I was referring to what seems to be an automated process from the “Fairphone Updater” app.
If you look at the screenshots I made, you can see how the app presents two options in the “OS Library” which in turn offer the possibility to install 1.5 and 1.6 for Fairphone OS option and 4.2.2 for the Stock Android one.

Maybe those instructions can or must be used once the Fairphone OS is replaced with something else, so this isn’t exactly clear to me yet.

In my little experience with Android so far, I think that for instance a “hard reset” of the phone (Settings -> Backup & Reset -> Factory data reset) would results in having the system just like when I first switched it on (of course, losing all data and apps unless saved elsewere).
If this is correct, I am not sure whether it is still correct once one would use the Fairphone App (as opposed to the method you linked) to switch to Stock Android.
Or could one just bring along the Fairphone Updater app to the Stock Android?

Also, what is that thing about bluetooth no longer working?

Here are the screenshots:

I’m not quite sure what you’re asking right now, but I’ll try and explain it a bit better.

“Going back” to Stock Android would mean installing a clean version of Android Jelly Bean, as the phone comes out of the box with a version of Fairphone OS installed. Yes, I do believe that is possible (not 100% sure). However if you mean downgrading your Android (for example from Jelly Bean 4.2 to Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.x), this I would strongly disapprove as Android fixes security issues etc. in their new releases.

Now basically your phone runs Android Jelly Bean, but Fairphone OS is just -let’s say- an “extension” on top of Android, with (like I said before) some extra features, apps and a custom interface.

So yes, I do believe you can switch to a phone without Fairphone OS, but everything -including the Fairphone Updater app and Peace of Mind widget for example- that is a ‘property’ of the Fairphone OS will disappear. If you want to return to Fairphone OS afterwards, you’ll have to do a clean install.

And yes, a hard reboot -as the one you mention- will wipe your phone and clean install the version of Fairphone OS that came shipped with your phone. (e.g. Jelly Bean and Fairphone 1.0)

About bluetooth, there are several other posts on this forum discussing that issue.

I hope I hereby have answered all your questions :slight_smile:

[quote=“Robin, post:9, topic:341”]
“Going back” to Stock Android would mean installing a clean version of Android Jelly Bean, as the phone comes out of the box with a version of Fairphone OS installed. Yes, I do believe that is possible (not 100% sure). However if you mean downgrading your Android (for example from Jelly Bean 4.2 to Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.x), this I would strongly disapprove as Android fixes security issues etc. in their new releases.[/quote]
That is not what I meant (downgrading) but thanks for clearing it out.

I think I complicated things instead of making them clearer.

We can say that you answered to my question by saying that once Stock is installed, the Fairphone updater is gone along with all the rest, therefore one cannot us it to restore Fairphone OS in the same “easy” way he would supposedly install Stock from the app (as opposed to using the method you liked).

I am not used yet to the idea of a system that can be restored or installed by clicking a button, therefore I wondered what was the extent to which such thing was possible.

For instance, based on your experience and knowledge, would you say that the “Fairphone Updater” app would work just the same if installed manually on the Stock Android OS that was installed from the Faiphone OS with the same installer (always on Fairphone of course)?

Sorry to bother with such twisted questions. :blush:

Just to clear this out: you can’t have the Fairphone Updater-app without having the Fairphone OS installed, that’s impossible. It’s a (necessary) part of Fairphone OS.

Just look at it like this: take the stock Android version of Jelly Bean (entirely, the entire ‘code’ let’s say) > add some features of your own (Fairphone Updater, Peace Of Mind, som interface tweaks, put into into the code), publish it and that would be Fairphone OS in this case. It’s really just an Android Jelly Bean “upgrade” specifically for Fairphones (and no other phones).

EDIT: Yes, entire ‘systems’ can be installed, restored, updated… with one click, that’s the beauty of modern technology: you don’t have to do anything (like type command-lines, or go through difficult setup wizards). It’ll do it all for you.

I saved the Fairphone Updater app file (FairphoneUpdater.apk) to my computer, why wouldn’t it exist on Stock?
Isn’t it a simple app after all? If I where to copy it to the Stock Android wouldn’t it install, or wouldn’t it work?
As far as I understand all it does is download the image and launch an installer.

But I sense you may be misinterpreting my motives for these questions.
I understand the difference between Stock Android as a default OS and Fairphone OS as the same OS just with some customizations (my second question was in fact about the specific customizations).
It is just that as I was fooling around with this new thing and I saw that option (the updater app) and I wondered if, by following through, I would have issues.

For instance I know know that if I do I can say goodbye to the use of bluetooth unless I stick with Stock, I understand that as one installs Stock, it replaces the Fairphone OS completely (nothing like coexisting installers ready to be launched again) which in turn needs to be reinstalled from scratch (we’ll see if the updater app works on Stock or not in case I decide to try).

This thread is about experiences with Stock, therefore I thought that these same curiosities might have been explored by someone already. :wink:

That clarifies a lot! I have no idea if the Fairphone Updater-app would work, but I would think not, considering it also knows which version you’re currently on, but what if there’s no version of Fairphone OS installed … ? I would say: try at your own risk and hopelfully you don’t ‘break’ anything :slight_smile:

@van - where did you get the reference about bluetooth not working?

In terms of the rest of your question, you’ll probably have more luck asking this to developers on the XDA forums

From the second link Robin posted on his first reply to me (here).

From that thread there is also a link to the original bug report.

I didn’t have time yet to dig deeper but although the report is 7-8 months old, there doesn’t seem to be any info it is resolved.

Robin hinted that there where other threads here discussing the issue, but I couldn’t find them, maybe he can shed some light.

@van - Ah I see!! Yes, that bug was fixed. It was a problem in the recovery image, but that has been replaced now so bluetooth should work fine :smile:

Oh I’m sorry, I thought you had the bluetooth problem already (similar to this or this), misread your post. My bad :smiley:

Oh well, that is good to know.
I think I will try it, especially to see if the updater app works the other way around. :smiley:

Just for the record, I decided to try the Stock Android version through the “Fairphone Updater” app.

The procedure was pretty straightforward with the download followed by the installation (I had to grant permission of course).

After rebooting I was presented with what I am not entirely sure to be a real “Stock Android”, but having never tried one I can’t be sure (maybe someone well-versed in this matter is willing to give it a try).
Anyway, for those who are wondering, the Stock system on the Fairphone is really just the same system minus the custom FP launcher.
As I said, I don’t know if there’s still something missing or changed from a pure Stock Android, but in my opinion is by all means an unremarkable experience.

Good to know, at least for those who are interested in trying this out (read disclaimer at the bottom), that all apps and configuration are still there.
I did also install Google apps (I don’t need them/want them for my final system) just for kicks before going to Stock and they were still there as well as any other app installed through f-droid.

After some tinkering, I wanted to see, as discussed above, whether the reverse operation was possible.
So I launched the Fairphone updater (still there) and as I suspected it downloaded the FP OS image and installed it in the same easy-peasy manner it did with Stock.

Upon restarting I had to reconfigure a few things, like widgets on the main panel but all in all they were just minor adjustments.

Unlike when going to Stock, returning to Fairphone OS wipes Google apps, I suspect in the same way it does after any system upgrade (I only did 1.5->1.6 so far and didn’t have Google apps installed).
This can be a bummer for those who make use of Google apps, although it shouldn’t be a definitive show-stopper, but can also be a nifty way to “uninstall” them if one wants, like I read in a few threads here.

After returning to Fairphone OS I have experienced one weird thing, but I am not entirely sure it happened as a consequence of these operations or of something done by me (I have been tinkering a lot so my system could have been in an unpredictable state).

Namely the weird thing was the “disappearance” of all ringtones and other sounds (both default ones and manually added) for alarms and phone calls and notifications.

I didn’t notice right away, but when I did I was able to return back to having them by simply rebooting.

In summary:

To go from FP OS to Stock the Fairphone Updater app works in a couple of easy steps (Download, Install and Reboot, Done).

Going to Stock doesn’t wipe anything: not data, not regular apps, not Google apps.

From Stock one can go back to FP OS in the same way through the Fairphone Updater app (which of course is still there), but as with any other FP OS system update Google apps will need to be reinstalled like the first time. Anything else is preserved.

This makes me think that from Fairphone OS one should be able to perform the update again to remove Google apps. I haven’t tried this though.


I have tried all these things in a carefree manner, because I still am testing the Fairphone and I don’t mind fixing whatever I brake.
I am in no way suggesting that what I have done will work exactly the same way for any other configuration, therefore I have to advise against attempting to do what I did.

The only reason I posted this is to provide additional info on the matter and to follow up on what was discussed above.

Bye :slight_smile:

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up to now I could not find (my fault, I guess) any answer to the question: does Stock Android supports 2 sim?

Suppose I don’t want to use the slide launcher and the peace of mind, installing the Stock Android will give me the 2 sim capability?

Two more questions:

  • does the Stock Android come with Google Apps already installed? In this case then I’d keep FairPhone OS.
  • if Stock Android comes with GApps would it be possible to uninstall from FairPhone OS the slide launcher and peace of mind?

Basically the target would be to have Stock Android without any GApp.

Thank you!

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I have gone back and forth from Fairphone OS and Stock several times during these first few days of testing and although I haven’t actually put two sims in the phone when on Stock, the second unused one shows just as on Fairphone OS.

So I guess that the answer is that even with Stock the second sim will work.

Stock doesn’t come with Google apps preinstalled and if you install Stock from recovery you don’t even have an option (unlike in Fairphone OS) to install them. If you install them in Fairphone OS and then use the updater to go to Stock, they will be waiting for you on reboot (read my post above for more details).
I think they can be installed in some other way, but I didn’t bother trying.

I don’t know how healthy a move can be to force the uninstallation of the Fairphone Launcher and the Peace of Mind app, but when you are on Stock you don’t have to worry about either as long as you don’t use them, and even in Fairphone OS you can just install another launcher (someone suggested “Launcher 3” from F-Droid).

So, to sum up, if you would want a Stock-like experience without G-apps, then just don’t install them and try the Launcher 3 on Fairphone OS and you won’t need to do anything else.


Hi and thanks a lot for your answer!
I very easily could switch to AOSP using the very useful Updater app.
Yes, AOSP supports both SIMs.
I installed ADW Launcher and I’m very happy about it!

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