Fairphone 2

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Fairphone 2
First releasedDecember 2015; 8 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 as of November 2022.[8] Production ceased in 2018.[9]

It was the second phone from the social enterprise Fairphone and the first one completely designed by them.[10] The phone was 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 was designed to have a higher life expectancy (five years) than other phones.[12]

The main challenge 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 phone's modular design allows the Fairphone team to develop newer modules with updated components. Newer versions of the modular design contain cameras.[13]

Also, the back of the Fairphone 2 was equipped with a USB pin-out and charging input, allowing aftermarket back covers with extended capabilities.[14]

Ethical considerations[edit]

The phone was designed to have a lower environmental impact than comparable mass-market smartphones, with an expected lifespan of five years. The modular design allows components to be replaced individually.[15]

Many electronic devices contain conflict minerals[16] (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, which reduces employment opportunities in the country. The Fairphone 2 supply chain was audited to ensure that these materials come from mines that do not fund armed groups while supporting local communities in the DRC (where possible) to provide an alternative to conflict mines.[11] The tantalum and tin ores are sourced from conflict-free mines in the DRC, the tungsten was from Rwanda, and the gold was from a Fairtrade certified mine in Peru.[17] In addition, the phone includes recycled plastic, copper, and tungsten.

Hi-P assembled the Fairphone 2 in Suzhou, China, in a factory that has been audited to ensure that it meets high standards for working conditions and for the environment.[18]

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 was the first modular smartphone available to the general public.[7] The modular, repairable design was designed to increase longevity, with an additional focus on increasing the product's recyclability.[19] 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 was possible to replace individual components within each module.[20]

The phone received a 10 out of 10 score for smartphone repairability from iFixit, the highest score ever given to a phone.[21]

The phone consists of seven 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.[20] Except for an updated slim case design, the first module set to be upgraded 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.[22]


Date Event Comment
22 Oct 2015 Sailfish OS port underway With input from Fairphone developers.[23]
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.[24] Unlike most Android manufacturers, Fairphone was committed to regularly releasing security patches and other updates.[11]
Apr 2017 Android 6.0 “Marshmallow” Free for all customers.[25]
8 Feb 2017 Ubuntu Touch port[26]
20 May 2017 LineageOS 14.1 community release First time an Android 7.1 “Nougat”-based operating system runs on the phone.[27]
13 Nov 2018 Android 7.0 “Nougat” official update First and so far only phone running on Snapdragon 801 to have this upgrade.[28]
16 Jun 2020 Android 9.0 “Pie” beta[29] 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[30][31]
Nov 2021 Android 10 release
Mar 2023 Android 10 update Final Fairphone 2 software update for Android 10[32][33]


The phone was primarily funded through pre-orders and was mostly sold directly,[34] though in some markets the phone was available through resellers such as The Phone Co-op in the UK.[35] 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).[36]

Just as they did for the Fairphone 1, Fairphone released details about costs for the Fairphone 2, which sold for an average price of €525.[37] Despite its relatively high price compared to many phones (a similarly equipped "normal" phone cost about US$402–500[38]), the margin on each phone sold was only €9, principally due to low sales volume and higher manufacturing costs than most phones. The price also funded a wide range of Fairphone's goals to make the phone more ethical, including recycling programs and partnerships for reduced usage of "blood minerals".[39]


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.[40] 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, aiming to ship all phones ordered during the crowdfunding campaign that month. However, issues in ramping up production caused a delay. The last pre-ordered device was shipped on 8 February 2016.[41] 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.[42]


On 9 January 2023 Fairphone announced that, after March 2023, the Fairphone 2 would stop receiving updates.[43] Fairphone released the final update for the Fairphone 2 on March 7, 2023.[44] Though parts for the phone are still available, the supply is limited.

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). 27 August 2019. 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. 30 October 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  8. ^ "Open Source and Fairphone, what we believe in". Fairphone. 25 August 2023. 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. 9 October 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  12. ^ Lomas, Natasha (24 November 2021). "Fairphone 2 gets Android 10 upgrade in beta". TechCrunch. Retrieved 8 November 2022.
  13. ^ "Fairphone 4 - Full phone specifications".
  14. ^ "Support - Charge your phone". Retrieved 10 March 2023.
  15. ^ "Extending the lifespan of our products". Fairphone. 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
  16. ^ Brigham, Katie (15 February 2023). "How conflict minerals make it into our phones". CNBC. Retrieved 9 August 2023.
  17. ^ "Fairphone 2 Supply Chain". Open Sourcemap. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
  18. ^ "The path to finding our new production partner: Hi-P". 19 February 2015. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
  19. ^ "Examining the Fairphone's environmental impact". Fairphone. 22 January 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  20. ^ a b "Fairphone 2 hands-on: Modular phones are finally here". Ars Technica. 22 October 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  21. ^ "Fairphone 2 Repair".
  22. ^ "Upgrade Fairphone 2 camera". Fairphone. Archived from the original on 2 September 2017. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  23. ^ Fairphone (22 October 2015). "Jolla community working on Sailfish OS for the Fairphone 2". fairphone.com.
  24. ^ Kees Jongenburger (28 April 2016). "Releasing the Fairphone 2 Open Operating System". Fairphone. Retrieved 12 January 2017.
  25. ^ "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.
  26. ^ "Ubuntu Touch on Fairphone 2".
  27. ^ "Using LineageOS on the FP2". 20 May 2017.
  28. ^ "What operating system (OS) does the Fairphone 2 run on?". Fairphone.com. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  29. ^ "Fairphone 2 with Snapdragon 801 officially receives a beta of Android 9 Pie". xda-developers. 17 June 2020. Retrieved 20 June 2020.
  30. ^ "Redefining longevity: Android 9 now available for Fairphone 2". Fairphone. 25 March 2021. Retrieved 25 March 2021.
  31. ^ 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.
  32. ^ "FP2: Android 10: Fairphone OS / Fairphone Open 23.02.0-rel.0". Fairphone Community Forum. 7 March 2023. Retrieved 10 March 2023.
  33. ^ "FP2: Android 10: Fairphone OS / Fairphone Open 23.02.0-rel.0". Fairphone Community Forum. 7 March 2023.
  34. ^ "Sustainable, modular Fairphone 2 hits pre-order | ZDNet". ZDNet. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  35. ^ "Fairphone - The Co-operative Phone and Broadband". www.thephone.coop. Archived from the original on 24 November 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  36. ^ "Fairphone scores €9 million in crowdfunding as pre-orders for its 'ethical smartphone' soar". Tech.eu. 1 October 2015. Retrieved 6 July 2023.
  37. ^ "Cost breakdown of the Fairphone 2". Fairphone. 9 September 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  38. ^ "Smartphone average price United States 2014-2025". Statista. Retrieved 8 November 2022.
  39. ^ "supporting fairer minerals initiative with the Fairphone 2". Fairphone. 20 August 2015. Retrieved 20 August 2015.
  40. ^ "Fairphone 2 pre-orders are now open". Fairphone. 16 July 2015. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  41. ^ "Fairphone 2 production and delivery countdown!". Fairphone. 10 December 2015. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  42. ^ "We've reached 100,000 Fairphone owners!". Fairphone. 26 May 2016. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  43. ^ Agnes (9 January 2023). "An Update on Fairphone 2". Fairphone. Retrieved 9 August 2023.
  44. ^ Porter, Jon (7 March 2023). "Fairphone 2 gets its final software update, seven years after original release". The Verge. Retrieved 9 August 2023.

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