Long-Lasting Design

Future proof: Fairphone has gone 5G

Long-Lasting Design

It is not new news that we strive to make the most of the materials used in our products. We’re moving closer to a circular economy by using materials from more responsible sources, emphasizing reuse and recycling, and designing our phones to last as long as possible. We do this for a simple reason: the longer you use your phone, the smaller your environmental footprint. But we want to take this one step further and future proof your phone. The only way to do this is to provide you with a 5G device – a tech spec of the future – for Fairphone 4.

We understand the public has a lot of questions and concerns surrounding 5G, so we want to tell you why we decided to launch a 5G enabled phone.

Why we boarded the 5G train

As many of you know by now, 5G is an evolution of existing wireless technologies to create an even smarter, more connected world. It radically expands bandwidth, improves speed and increases capacity in mobile devices. In addition to consumers having (practically) unlimited connectivity with smartphones, 5G provides incredible opportunities for other applications aside from just mobile internet. For example, sectors such as education, health, energy, tech industry, transportation and logistics will make use of 5G for their business processes. Such, often mission-critical, business processes demand for extremely high availability of mobile communication.

Over the years, we have seen increasing volumes of mobile data usage and that is all but guaranteed to continue to rise with new frequency bands, but also more efficient radio technologies will ensure that 5G enables us to support the rise in data usage for the next decade. Our mission is to establish a market for ethical consumer electronics to motivate the industry to act more responsibly – ensuring we have up-to-date technology is a big part of that as it demonstrates to the industry that you can produce a sustainable, profitable, feature competitive smartphone that can hold its own on the global market.

5G is here to stay. As with previous generations of mobile networks; there is no going back. Network operators have invested huge resources to offer an even faster service to their customers. We made the Fairphone 4 to make sure Fairphone customers can take advantage of these investments and technological advances.

 The Fairphone 4 is designed to hold up well for years to come.

5G allows for faster downloads on devices than ever before. For example, downloading a high-definition film over a 4G network takes an average of 50 minutes – on 5G, it takes just nine. Aside from that, there are many more technical evolutions implemented such as an extremely short time to establish a connection.

Is 5G safe?

 The radio waveband – used for mobile phone networks – is non-ionising which means it lacks sufficient energy to break apart DNA and cause cellular damage, » says David Robert Grimes, physicist and cancer researcher in a BBC article. « People are understandably concerned over whether they might elevate their risk of cancer, but it’s crucial to note that radio waves are far less energetic than even the visible light we experience every day.

While some people are concerned with the possible consequences of the higher frequency use of 5G, currently there is nothing to indicate that 5G poses a risk to human health. There are strict global regulations in place that monitor the specific absorption rate (SAR) of radio frequencies into the body, which are measured at the head, the hands and in free space – the three conditions which global regulations require us to test. Fairphone 4 remains well below these certified safety limits, in fact, Fairphone 4 has some of the lowest SAR levels on the market, less than half the legally required limit – which is still well within the safe range.

So in addition to our phones offering simple DIY repairs, replaceable parts, modular upgrades and extended software support, we’re adding 5G to the mix. Enabling you, even more, to extend your phone well beyond the average 2-3 year lifespan and reduce the number of electronics that end up as waste. In other words, blazing-fast download speeds are no gimmick. They are, in fact, in line with our design principles and exactly what we have in mind, when thinking about functional innovation. 5G future proofs the Fairphone 4 for years to come. Making it a joy to keep it in use longer. Like we always say: The most sustainable phone is the one that lasts.

Check out the new Fairphone 4 >> or learn more about our longevity commitment >>


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