From the very beginning Open Source software has been an important topic for Fairphone – it’s part of our history and DNA.
We often say that software is the unsung hero of longer-lasting phones. So in 2021, we upgraded the Fairphone 2 to Android 9. But we didn’t stop there. With the community’s help, we raised the bar once again: In mid-November 2021, we rolled out the first Android 10 beta release for testing. The public release in early 2022 marked an unprecedented seven years of software support. This is in stark contrast to the industry standard. Without the help of the Open-Source community, this industry-first would never have been possible. This is why we need and will always continue to support Open-Source ambitions.
Chances are you’ve grown increasingly aware of data security over the past few years; this isn’t just about protecting your email password or credit card number anymore. We’ve seen first hand, in real-time, the cost of intensive data extraction on our society. There are huge forces at play here, but we hope to influence them by increasing awareness and availability of open-source software (like /e/OS, LineageOS). Until operating systems like this become the norm, it is up to each one of us to be vigilant about our own data.
Our 7-year-old Fairphone 2 was upgraded to Android 10 – that’s 7 years of software support. An industry first for an Android device!
We’re on a journey to change the electronics industry, and our superpower is our incredible community! We collaborated with the Fairphone open source community to help build the operating system. At Fairphone, we’re constantly raising the bar for ourselves and the industry, proving that it is possible to put sustainability at the heart of technology.
Setting new standards and reshaping an entire industry takes serious, long-term commitment – and likeminded changemakers. So we partnered with /e/ Foundation and its main contributor Murena, to make their privacy-focused operating system, /e/OS, accessible to all. /e/OS doesn’t scan, access or track user data multiple times per day. All your favorite Android apps can still be used, with /e/OS notifying you of built-in trackers hidden within each app. Fairphone 4 and Fairphone 3+ with /e/OS preinstalled are available on their webshop.
Beyond Android updates for the Fairphone 2, we also have our own alternative Android operating system – Fairphone Open, which is exclusive to Fairphone 2. We wanted to create a path for developers to engage with our growing community and promote our core values on longevity and transparency.
We believe that offering an alternative Operating System like Fairphone Open supports the growing demand of consumers who are concerned about their personal data and surveillance capitalism.
You’ll find the full open source code to build your own Fairphone OS in our Open Source documentation.
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