Why the Snapdragon 632 processor choice?

The PF3 has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 processor. I’m concern about this choice.
In my experience I’m actually using a Sony Z3 compact which I bought in october 2014, meaning I’m using this phone since more than 5 years. I changed many time the screen and the camera module…not only FP can be repair, but it’s not my point. The Sony Z3C has a Snapdragon 801 (best processor in his time) and run under android 6. Today this phone began to work really slowly, it lag, it freeze, it crash… So my question is how will behave FP3 in 5 years knowing his processor is a midrange processor in 2019. I don,t understand this choice. Why not making the choice of a faster processor hopping (praying) in 5 years it will still be fully fonctional, I can be wrong but I’m pretty sure in 2024 the Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 will be completly obsolete and not able to run correctly the FP3. What the point to make fixable phone if I can’t use because is too slow ?

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You’re making the common mistake to project your personal use case or expectation onto everybody.

The 632 is totally fine for most people’s smartphone needs right now, and it will be fine for most people’s smartphone needs in 5 years time, just as the 801 was totally fine for most people’s smartphone needs when the Fairphone 2 was introduced with it, and it still is fine for most people’s smartphone needs after more than 3 years and will be for some time still to come.

Why? Because most people don’t use the small fraction of computing-power-hungry Apps which really use the respective SoC to capacity … or if something might even lag for a moment, then they would just deal with it for the short moment instead of making an existential-crisis-level fuss about it.
I think the common computing tasks apart from high-end gaming or this or that other fringe use case just don’t need flagship performance. Ever.

The practical experience of the Fairphones 1 and 2 clearly shows the problem to tackle right now is software support over a long time … driver support and OS support for the given hardware.

And there’s the real case you could make:
Wouldn’t a now flagship SoC have better chances to receive longer software support from the vendor?
I guess we’ll just have to see now how Qualcomm will treat the 632 in the future.


Don’t know about the choice of the 632, but I’m running Android 9 on my Fairphone 2 which has the same Snapdragon 801 as your Z3C (and came out with Android 5). And on my development/testing FP2 I have a preview of Android 10 running.

I can’t confirm that it’s “really slowly, it lag, it freeze, it crash”.

Of course the experience with one phone model and one SoC can’t be translated directly to a different phone and SoC and a future that is 5 years away.
But I wouldn’t be too pessimistic about it.


Is it even guaranteed, that the lagging of the phone is caused by the SoC?
Otherwise this whole discussion is missig the point; though I fully agree with @AnotherElk and @Ingo!


The fact is the PF was introduced in his time with a highrange processor (the 801) in my opinion that’s why 4 years later it’s still able to run correctly. And when I say correctly it mean badly in my experience with a 801 in 2019 (and I’m not a gamer, i just use basic app, texting, mail, google map). BUT oviously a complete different choice has been made for the PF3 because it run out with a midrange processor. So there’s is a difference, it’s not just my experience.

In this case @BertG is right. This is not because of the SoC and can be fixed with finding the culprit App(s), with a factory reset, or with installing the phone from scratch.


Yep, that looks more like an apps problem, than one of the SoC.
The demand for SoC performance by these apps can hardly have increased enough to make the phone perform badly.
Even older SoC do manage that well.
New hardware with higher demand can be excluded as well.

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No, it wasn’t. Please, check the dates, the 801 was at the time an “old” SoC (Samsung S5, 2014; Sony Z3C, 2014; HTC M8, 2014; OnePlus One, 2014; FP2, with an older revision, not the MSM8974AC, 2015). Fairphone was criticised for that choice at the time, in fact.

People were wrong, in my opinion. Even with an unstable kernel, FP2 still runs fine today for a lot of users.


If you’re interested in more discussion details regarding this question then please first read the following topic:


Google started “project treble” with Android 8. The driver support for any chipset is now an obligation, even for those cheap, crappy Chinese Mediatek processors.
Supporting a device over a five years time period with updates shouldn’t be a problem anymore.

In terms of power consumption it’s been a good decision not to choose an Snapdragon 845 or 855, but…

  1. Gaming is even now in 2019 no fun on this phone. Top games like “Fortnite” and “Grid Autosport” aren’t supported, even so you payed 450 € for this device.
  2. 4 GB RAM and 64 GB internal storage. Still enough in 2019, but in 2023?
  3. Internal storage is not UFS 2.0 or higher.
  4. No fast 5 Ghz WiFi ac, even a Galaxy S5 in 2014 supported this, and WiFi range/ quality isn’t the best on Fairphone 3
  5. Missing 4G frequencies. LTE Bands 28 and 32.

On the positive side we find: Bluetooth 5.0, a really good 4G signal and an impressive battery life considering the small built in 3.060 mAh battery.

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Is this a definitive No? Source?
Looked more like a bug to me, and bugs might get fixed.


No, it’s not a bug. No 5 Ghz WiFi ac, because of the Snapdragon 632.

Data on Qualcomm’s website available: https://www.qualcomm.com/products/snapdragon-632-mobile-platform

It’s Fairphone’s fault, that the FM-radio isn’t activated on FP3. You could call this a “bug”. :wink:


Thanks, I missed that.
I wonder why it did try to connect using ac then with my router … pfft … WiFi :woman_shrugging: .


This was discussed in the speculation thread already.

Yes, Qualcomm’s page says 632 does not support ac.

Wikipedia says 632 supports ac.


Wikichip as well:

IIRC even Geekbench entries suggested it was supported. Just Qualcomm’s page says it does not.

(Calling it ac is out of date naming scheme anyway :wink: )

I don’t think it matters either way. You won’t saturate the bandwidth anyway.


The question is why did they choose a qualcomm SoC in the first place.
The question is easy to answer. They offer complete packages using their components, which apart from the SoC and the wireless all suck horribly (charging IC almost charged my battery to 4.7V, because of simple taking out the battery).
I would like to see a iMX. 8 QuadMax with it’s 8 cores in the FP4.

3 posts were merged into an existing topic: Lineage-16.0 (Android Pie) Nightly

My Fritz Box says: "FP3-Wolfgang - - 5 GHz - ↓433 - ↑292 - ac/ 80 MHz, WPA2, 1 x 1, 11k, 11v


Thanks for this.
I set my Fritz!Box to allow ac again, and now the connection seems to be successful and stable, which it wasn’t at all before.

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The Snapdragon 632 is a fairly good processor, but the Snapdragon 710 would be a much better choice. The processor is faster than the younger model by more than 80% in AnTuTu and half in Geekbench 5. Just look at the memory bandwidth (14.9 against 7.46 GB/s). The production technology is also better (10 nm vs. 14 in 632).

If I read your posting correct, the 632 is the newer one.
Than an explanation might be, that the support period for an older SoC likely ends sooner than that for a newer model? And - as I understand it - support by the manufacturer might be vital for software updates etc.