Fairphone 2

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Fairphone 2
Fairphone 2 (25250139694) (cropped).jpg
First releasedDecember 2015; 6 years ago (2015-12)
Units shipped115,000 (As of August 2019)[1]
PredecessorFairphone 1
SuccessorFairphone 3
Form factorSlate
Dimensions143.0 mm (5.63 in) H
73 mm (2.9 in) W
11 mm (0.43 in) D
Mass168 g (5.9 oz)
Operating systemAndroid 10 "Queen Cake"
Android 5.1 "Lollipop" at launch
System on chipQualcomm MSM8974AB-AB
CPUQualcomm Snapdragon 801 (quad-core) 2.26 GHz
GPUQualcomm Adreno 330 GPU 578 MHz
Storage32 GB eMMC5
Removable storagemicroSD
Battery2420 mAh Li-ion
Display5 in (130 mm) diagonal IPS LCD 1080×1920 px HD 446 ppi
Rear camera12 MP CMOS sensor (f/2.2) with dual-LED flash[a]
Front camera5 MP (f/2.4)[b]
Connectivity2G (GSM/GPRS/EDGE): 850/900/1,800/1,900 MHz
3G (UMTS/HSPA/HSPA+): 900/1,900/2,100 MHz
LTE: 800/1,800/2,600 MHz
Wi-Fi: 2.4/5.0 GHz, 802.11b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth: 4.0 LE
Wi-Fi Hotspot
microUSB 2.0 with support for USB OTG
Expansion Port on the backside for connectivity to external case
Otheraccelerometer, gyrometer, digital compass, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor, dual SIM[2]
SAR0.65 W/kg (head),
1.1 W/kg (body)[3]
ReferencesSpecification of FP2[4]

The Fairphone 2 is a touchscreen-based, dual-SIM smartphone designed to be easily repaired by the user.[5] First released in December 2015,[6] it was the first modular smartphone available for purchase[7] and has since received both hardware improvements and major software updates, initially shipping with Android 5 "Lollipop" and running Android 10 "Queen Cake" as of November 2021.[8] Production ceased in 2018.[9]

It is the second phone from the social enterprise Fairphone and the first one completely designed by it.[10] The phone is ethically sourced, using conflict-free minerals, Fairtrade gold and recycled materials. It was assembled in audited factories with good working conditions.[11]


Hardware choice[edit]

The phone is designed to have a higher life expectancy (5 years) than other phones.

The main problem with the Fairphone 1 was a system on a chip (SoC) Mediatek MT6589 that was not widely used and thus did not receive long-term software support from its manufacturer. For the Fairphone 2, Fairphone chose the widely used Snapdragon 801 platform (a high-end, early 2014 platform); the popularity of this SoC should help maintain the LTS of Fairphone 2.

Fairphone deliberately did not include recent innovations like wireless charging or USB-C ports, ensuring a lower price and fewer compatibility issues. However, the modular design of the phone allows the Fairphone team to develop newer modules with updated components, the first of which have been upgraded versions of the modules containing cameras.

Also, the back of the Fairphone 2 is equipped with a USB pin-out and charging input, allowing aftermarket back covers with extended capabilities.

Ethical considerations[edit]

The phone is designed to have a lower environmental impact than comparable mass-market smartphones, with an expected lifespan of 5 years. The modular design allows components to be replaced individually.[12]

Many electronic devices contain conflict minerals (tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold) from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), used by armies and rebel groups to fund war in the country. Therefore some manufacturers avoid all materials from the DRC, but this reduces employment opportunities in the country. The Fairphone 2 supply chain is audited to ensure that these materials come from mines that do not fund armed groups, while supporting local communities in the DRC (where possible) in order to provide an alternative to conflict mines.[11] The tantalum and tin ores are sourced from conflict-free mines in the DRC, the tungsten is from Rwanda, and the gold is from a Fairtrade-certified mine in Peru.[13] In addition, the phone includes recycled plastic, copper, and tungsten.

The Fairphone 2 is assembled by Hi-P in Suzhou, China, in a factory which has been audited to ensure that it meets high standards for working conditions and for the environment.[14]

Modular design[edit]

A image of the front and back of a Fairphone 2, showing the screen, camera and speaker at the front, and antennas, battery, card slots, loudspeaker and rear camera at the back, among other components.
Front and back of the phone with a transparent case, showing the modular design. The individual components can be highlighted in the annotated image.

The Fairphone 2 is the first modular smartphone available to the general public.[7] The modular, repairable design is designed to increase longevity, with an additional focus on increasing the recyclability of the product.[15] The phone components are designed to be replaceable, with the end user only needing to use a screwdriver to replace components of the phone. In addition, it is possible to replace individual components within each module.[16]

The phone received a 10/10 score for smartphone repairability from iFixit, the highest score that was ever given to a phone.[17]

The phone consists of 7 removable parts; the main chassis, the battery, the display assembly, the rear camera module, the top module (selfie camera, headphones, speaker, sensors), the bottom module (loudspeaker, vibration, microphone and charging port), and the back protective cover.[16] Except for an updated slim case design, the first module set to be upgraded was the cameras, with a new rear camera module (with a dual LED flash and 12 megapixel camera) and top module (with a 5 megapixel camera) in September 2017.[18]


Date Event Comment
22 Oct 2015 Sailfish OS port underway With input from Fairphone developers.[19]
21 Dec 2015 Launch. Android 5.1 “Lollipop” Two variants of Android are available – the default Android installation, which includes Google mobile services (GMS), and the Fairphone Open Source OS, which does not include GMS, but can easily be rooted.[20] Unlike most Android manufacturers, Fairphone is committed to regularly releasing security patches and other updates.[11]
Apr 2017 Android 6.0 “Marshmallow” Free for all customers.[21]
8 Feb 2017 Ubuntu Touch port[22]
20 May 2017 LineageOS 14.1 community release First time an Android 7.1 “Nougat”-based operating system runs on the phone.[23]
13 Nov 2018 Android 7.0 “Nougat” official update First and so far only phone running on Snapdragon 801 to have this upgrade.[24]
16 Jun 2020 Android 9.0 “Pie” beta[25] Fairphone in cooperation with the LineageOS team. Making it so far the only phone running on Snapdragon 801 to have an Android 9.0 “Pie” update
Mar 2021 Android 9.0 “Pie” stable[26][27]
Nov 2021 Android 10 “Queen Cake”[28]


The phone was primarily funded through pre-orders, and is mostly being sold directly,[29] though in some markets the phone is available through resellers such as The Phone Co-op in the UK.[30] The pre-order campaign started on 16 July 2015 and ended on 30 September 2015, with 17,418 phones pre-ordered (the objective was 15,000).

Just as they did for the Fairphone 1, Fairphone released details about costs for the Fairphone 2, sold for an average price of €525.[31] Despite its relatively high price compared to many phones (a similarly equipped "normal" phone cost about US$250–300[citation needed]), the margin on each phone sold is only €9, principally due to low sales volume and higher manufacturing costs than most phones. The price also funds a wide range of Fairphone's goals to make the phone more ethical, including recycling programs and partnerships for reduced usage of "blood minerals".[32]


On 16 July 2015, pre-orders for Fairphone 2 became available. To order the components needed to assemble the first devices, as well as to generate the revenue needed to ensure continuous production, Fairphone initiated a crowdfunding campaign by setting a goal to achieve 15,000 pre-orders by the end of September.[33] The goal was finally exceeded, reaching a total of 17,418 pre-orders before the pre-order period ended on 30 September. Production started in December 2015, with the aim of shipping all phones ordered during the crowdfunding campaign during that month. However, issues in ramping up production caused a delay. The last pre-ordered device was shipped on 8 February 2016.[34] On 26 May 2016, Fairphone reported that their milestone of selling 40,000 of the Fairphone 2 had been reached, and that all phones ordered before that date had been shipped.[35]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 8 MP at launch
  2. ^ 2 MP at launch


  1. ^ "Fairphone 3 : le smartphone équitable plus moderne et plus durable". www.frandroid.com (in French). Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  2. ^ "What are the technical specifications of the Fairphone 2?". Fairphone. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
  3. ^ fairphone.com
  4. ^ "Technical specifications of the Fairphone 2". support.fairphone.com. Archived from the original on 20 June 2021.
  5. ^ "The architecture of the Fairphone 2: Designing a competitive device that embodies our values". Fairphone. 16 June 2015.
  6. ^ Douwe (21 December 2015). "Fairphone 2 starts shipping across Europe". Fairphone. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
  7. ^ a b "Fairphone 2: World's first modular smartphone is revolutionising electronics piece by piece". International Business Times UK. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  8. ^ "Open Source and Fairphone, what we believe in". Fairphone. Retrieved 29 November 2021.
  9. ^ Monique (22 March 2019). "Proving our case: Fairphone 2 is sold out!". Fairphone. Retrieved 8 May 2019.
  10. ^ "Designing the next Fairphone from the inside out". 13 May 2015. Retrieved 23 July 2015.
  11. ^ a b c "Conflict-Free And Easy To Repair, The Fairphone Is The World's Most Ethical Phone". Co.Exist. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  12. ^ "Extending the lifespan of our products". Fairphone. 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
  13. ^ "Fairphone 2 Supply Chain". Open Sourcemap. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
  14. ^ "The path to finding our new production partner: Hi-P". 19 February 2015. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
  15. ^ "Examining the Fairphone's environmental impact". Fairphone. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  16. ^ a b "Fairphone 2 hands-on: Modular phones are finally here". Ars Technica. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  17. ^ "Fairphone 2 Repair".
  18. ^ "Upgrade Fairphone 2 camera". Fairphone. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  19. ^ Fairphone (22 October 2015). "Jolla community working on Sailfish OS for the Fairphone 2". fairphone.com.
  20. ^ Kees Jongenburger (28 April 2016). "Releasing the Fairphone 2 Open Operating System". Fairphone. Retrieved 12 January 2017.
  21. ^ "How can I update to Android 6.0 Marshmallow?". Fairphone. 25 April 2017. Archived from the original on 27 April 2017. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
  22. ^ "Ubuntu Touch on Fairphone 2".
  23. ^ "Using LineageOS on the FP2".
  24. ^ "What operating system (OS) does the Fairphone 2 run on?". Fairphone.com. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  25. ^ "Fairphone 2 with Snapdragon 801 officially receives a beta of Android 9 Pie". xda-developers. 17 June 2020. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  26. ^ "Redefining longevity: Android 9 now available for Fairphone 2". Fairphone. 25 March 2021. Retrieved 25 March 2021.
  27. ^ Porter, Jon (25 March 2021). "Five-year-old Fairphone 2 getting updated to almost three-year-old Android 9". The Verge. Retrieved 26 March 2021.
  28. ^ "Open Source and Fairphone, what we believe in". Fairphone. Retrieved 29 November 2021.
  29. ^ "Sustainable, modular Fairphone 2 hits pre-order | ZDNet". ZDNet. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  30. ^ "Fairphone - The Co-operative Phone and Broadband". www.thephone.coop. Archived from the original on 24 November 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  31. ^ "Cost breakdown of the Fairphone 2". Fairphone. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  32. ^ "supporting fairer minerals initiative with the Fairphone 2". Fairphone. Retrieved 20 August 2015.
  33. ^ "Fairphone 2 pre-orders are now open". Fairphone. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  34. ^ "Fairphone 2 production and delivery countdown!". Fairphone. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  35. ^ "We've reached 100,000 Fairphone owners!". Fairphone. Retrieved 28 May 2016.

External links[edit]