Honestly, I do think the answer is technical difficulty for a IMHO rather niche feature (in the sense only a few people can’t live without it). Unfortunately, FP can’t include all features one would wish to have. To do this, they would need to release multiple devices as big companies like Apple or Samsung do, and the users would be able to choose what they wish. Yet they are still a scale-up, and I believe they can’t release more than one device at a time. Perhaps the FP5 will allow such options
The lack of wireless chaging was also a huge deal breaker for me. And the argument about wasting electricity seems nonsense. I also have solar panels and secondly i bet the constant plugging in and out a connector wastes a lot more electricty since it wears down the cable and the port pretty fast or the fact that FP4 is trying to make me buy a usbc charger and cable. Producing and shipping these things would waste a lot more energy than building in a charging coil(and wireless charging it for its entire lifetime). A lot more energy is wasted by not using my solar power than wireless charging. Also about these magnetic charging cables, mining rare earth metals is not exactly environmentally friendly. I dont know who makes production decisions here but this was a stupid decision. Maybe my s7 will truck along for a few more years.
I haven’t read all the replies in this thread. But did you ask Fairphone support? They know best. All I can guess is that Fairphone wants you to open your phone and make repairs easy with modules. That makes this charging coil a challenge, both in cost and complexity. Wireless charging also generates more heat which damages your battery and shortens its lifespan. Of course there are solutions, such as including a fan with the wireless charger like the new Pixel stand. Or limit the charging speed. Both are not ideal. But again, Fairphone support can answer this one best.
Charging circuits arent more complex due to wireless charging. And the heat is a non issue either. My s7 has endured a lot of heat even so that it caused a burn in in my amoled screen(you can see the logo of an adult site burned into the screen when i fell asleep on my phone). My battery is fine and the heat from wireless charging isnt even comparable to what it has endured. (Yeah i really need a new phone but no wireless charging is a deal breaker). Really appreciated it people refrain from making baseless arguments.
Screen burn-in isn’t caused by heat but by wearing out pixel colors at intense brightness levels for a long period of time with the same color. That’s why pixels move on an always on display. But let’s not branch this into another discussion.
Creating a modular phone is complex. That’s why Fairphone dropped the LED light and headphone jack as well. Did you ever dissemble a phone to replace a battery which used wireless charging? That coil adds complexity, especially to a modular phone. We should be happy we got NFC on the Fairphone.
Heat is also a known issue with wireless charging, as mentioned, some wireless chargers come with a fan nowadays. So this isn’t a baseless argument. The only way to manage the heat is by lowering the energy levels, which would make wireless charging very slow and IMHO not worth it. My Pixel 3 has been using wireless charging for 3 years, the phone sometimes got so warm that it actually discharged while charging. This was in summer of course and my screen doesn’t have any burn-in by the way. The battery didn’t fair well with that kind of treatment. Fairphone takes great care in the longevity of the battery, because it makes sense from a sustainability point of view. This is for example one of their selling points for their earbuds.
But if you really want to know an answer from the experts then contact Fairphone. Because let’s be real, we’re both not system integrators at Fairphone.
Here is the official FP statement linked
You may find it stupid, but that does not mean a stupid person made that decision
There are several other articles discussing this and yes you might have your own solar power, but is this true for the majority of people who would use wireless charging?
Have fun with your S7 and there is not one phone covering all needs and its fine when people decide to use another brand. Buying second hand is quite sustainable as well.
And welcome to the community although I’m quite surprised how demanding and aggressive one can introduce themself.
Yet the FP4 proved with a modular charging/data port that they knew how cables and charging ports break. Which is is more wasteful than an entire lifecycle of wireless charging. I am only reiterating. So yes this decision seems very stupid. Nothing aggressive about it either. It is just a fact.
I think you take the term “burn-in” to literal. It’s also called image-persistence. It’s not caused by heat. Otherwise pixel shifting would not be the solution, but better heat conduction.
As mentioned by me, and by experience from other people. Wireless charging is not healthy for your phone due to the heat it generates, hence the fans nowadays on wireless chargers. Talk to the actual engineers. We’re just a bunch of Fairphone users. None of us are involved in the design process.
“The risk of screen burn is higher in the AMOLED display as the pixels per inch are enclosed in a glass layer, causing them to heat, burn and eventually die, causing imprints. In contrast, the screen burn risk is significantly less in the super Amoled as pixels are spread uniformly.”
Google your statements first.
Leds degrade because of heat. Their own heat, backlights and external heat. Organic leds are more sensitive to this. My last reply on this useless topic.
Burn-in is the appearance of a “ghost image" on your TV or phone that won’t go away. It’s caused by the display’s technology. Each individual pixel produces its own light, which gradually dims over time. If an image remains on the screen for many hours, certain pixels get overused and degrade faster, creating discoloration in particular areas. Your screen will still function, but the dark spots can be distracting or annoying.
We’ve engineered the Super Retina and Super Retina XDR displays to be the best in the industry in reducing the effects of OLED “burn-in.” This includes special algorithms that monitor the usage of individual pixels to produce display calibration data. Your iPhone uses that data to automatically adjust the brightness levels for each pixel as needed to reduce visual effects from “burn-in” and to maintain a consistent viewing experience.
Here is a lighter against an iPhone display (check 6:40):
Heat is not the issue. It’s wearing out the light source of the individual pixels.
Interesting read, but that’s about lighting.
Shall I again send in an image of a note4 wireless charging back cover or will you scroll back up. There is no complication there with the battery. The cover has nfc and charging and the battery is on the phone’s side. This was a sorted thing.
Sure, please share the link. But let’s take modularity and easy repairability into account. Together with cost. They dropped simpler components due to that train of thought. If it was easy, affordable and sustainable they would’ve done it.
Yes, you are mainly right. But isn’t this a valid job for the Hardware Architect and Engineers? Knowing the topic from my daily business, I would say that many other jobs at a design of a Smartphone are much more complex, as adding the coils for Qi charging. Especially due to the fact, that it can be a dedicated job for the back cover if a second power path was foreseen (if my info from design is correct, the SOC supports it inside the chipset).
Yes, but anyway a good smartphone and also some chargers support it properly. I charged my Xperia XZ2 since I received it as early buyer. I charge it like 90% of the known users over the night in the normally cooler sleeping room. There was never an issue with a hot smartphone. It starts slow charging with thermal management to prevent a hot battery (which affect the lifetime of the battery manly). Only about 1h before clock alarm or defined charging stop time it charged the last 10%. Useless to tell that I use the first battery inside my nearly 4 year old XZ2 (the XZ from my wife is 6 years old have also the first battery in). So in general it is possible to do, but you need to know a lot of batteries and power supply design.
If it was easy, affordable and sustainable they would’ve done it.
I can’t help but chip in to humbly express my disagreement along with @Zoltan_Kozma. QI is a simple and cheap technology. I don’t think modularity could have played a major role here since the QI charging circuit could be integrated in the back cover, being its own module there.
Sustainability is a difficult to compute value. In my household we have a pretty heterogenous park of devices in use. But we made sure they all support wireless charging, so instead of having a multitude of chargers all around the house and car, a handful of charging pads do the job. Yes, they waste some energy while charging. But having another dozen of wall plugs and cables hanging around 24/7 for the different plug types would waste energy, too. Not to speak about the environmental effects of their production. Moreover, contactless charging does not wear out plugs and sockets, avoiding expensive accidents and repairs in the long run.
My point is, it is rarely easy to tell what is more sustainable in the end.
To keep the phone price reasonable the Fairphone people probably had to make decisions about which extras could be integrated and which not. QI seems to have not been high enough on the list to make it. I imagine it would have been really easy to at least integrate two contact pads like in the before mentioned Note4 though, which would have opened the opportunity to offer a QI enabled back cover as a later addon.
I guess just nobody came up with that idea during design phase, which is, of course, a pity.
But since it is futile to pity things which already happened, I am here to offer sort of a temporary fix. I am currently developing a 3D printable TPU bumper design that integrates a cheap <$10 QI charging receiver. Just put the jacket on and voila!
May be the future will be seeing some nice little pogo pins pointing to the back cover inside the Fairphone 5. Or in some upgraded charging port module. Who knows?
The future may bring wireless charging, but I don’t think it’s a high priority. I also rather see a better camera. USB-C can fix your problem of charging multiple devices nowadays, even your laptop.
USB-C can fix your problem of charging multiple devices nowadays, even your laptop.
You may be correct in the long run. But since we strive to use our devices as long as possible (sustainability, you know), many if not most of our current devices do not feature an USB-C port yet.
But what else? It’s only Lightning (Apple) Micro-USB or USB-C, so why do you need a dozen of different cables and chargers?
Further to Incanus’s note: there are magnetic options for those three connectors and Fair trade as well
1 cable 3 connectors
A small contribution from my side (and not to pour gasoline on fire, it is just coming from my own 2-weeks experience). I am also adding two pictures of the phone and the case with the Qi-receiver in-between to show how it looks like after my small modification on the protective case:
I have been using the Nillkin Qi-receiver since 2 weeks. Instead of placing it INSIDE the phone (thus under the backcover), I placed it between the phone and the protective case, after removing the sticker and double-sided tape on the receiver to make it as thin as possible. Subsequently I made small cuts and removed a small piece from the bottom rear side of the USB-c opening of the protective case so that the cable can move freely and the plug can be (almost) easily plugged and unplugged whenever it is necessary (for example when you don;t have any wireless charger around and have to use a cable to charge your phone). The bulge on the back side of the protective case gives me some discomfort of course, but it is not 'unbearable’so to say. It is barely visible from distances >50cm if you don’t look very carefully; and it doesn’t feel spongy or unstable in your hand when you hold the phone. The plug is level with the protective case so it does not hit anywhere when the botom of the phone touches a surface. And the most important finding for me is: The charging temperature during a charging cycle (normal charging, not slow charging) from +/-60% to +/- 85% has been 28 grades celcius max. while it is between 35 and 40 celcius during the cable charging(normal or quick charge, with or without original Fairphone cable) in the same ambient temperature.
I think this could be a viable solution for the majority of the wireless charging supporters who wants to have a FP. It might be also applicable for the FP4 and its soft protective case.
This looks great. You can also print a custom case to eliminate the bulge: