Seven years old Fairphone 2 gets new Android update, leaving competitors in the dust
March 11, 2022
2015’s Fairphone 2 which launched with Android 5, is now getting upgraded to Android 10, which is a big feat – in fact, a record – for an Android phone,
Android phone makers are usually full of excuses when probed about the duration of software support. Some, like Samsung and Google, have upped their game tremendously. Samsung’s recent flagships will get up to four generations of OS updates and Google’s Pixel 6 will get three Android updates. Apple continues to outshine them with five to six years of software support for its iPhones.
To cut Android OEMs some slack, most of them use third-party chips which are dependent on manufacturers like Qualcomm and MediaTek for support, and there are also a lot of hurdles to getting Google approval for new Android versions.
Since Fairphone is no different than other Android phone makers, it also went through a lot of challenges when updating the Fairphone 2 to Android 10. It is powered by the very old 28nm Snapdragon 801, which Qualcomm stopped supporting in 2016.
Fairphone is known for making repairable, sustainable phones, and has kept true to its promise by working hard to overcome the challenges they encountered during the process. The company’s goal is to provide at least two, or if possible five, OS updates. Although Android 10 might prove to be the last OS update for the Fairphone 2, the company has promised it will continue getting security patches for as long as Android 10 is maintained by Google.
Reparability and sustainability unfortunately come at a cost. Fairphone sells its phones in limited regions, which does not include the US. They aren’t the most specced out phones on the market but are yet on the higher end of the price range.
That looks to be changing as the company’s latest phone, the Fairphone 4, is a notable improvement over its predecessor and has a slightly more modern design and fairly decent specs. The cherry on the top is that it earned a perfect reparability score from iFixit.
So while Fairphone’s phones might not be the best handsets by conventional standards, they sound like the best option for those who are not crazy about specs and want to keep their gadgets for a long time.
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