Designed for long-lasting use and easy repair, the Fairphone is the world’s first sustainable, modular Android smartphone. Together with over 100,000 Fairphone owners, the company is bringing social change to the tech industry: sustainability is at the heart of everything they do, and they’re tackling social challenges in the phone supply chain. Some materials used to make the phones, for example, are sourced from conflict-free mines in high risk areas which benefits local economies instead of armed militias. The company has grown consistently since its foundation. What started with just six people in Amsterdam in 2013 has become a 50-strong social enterprise that now markets its phones across Europe. From the beginning, Android has been essential as the basis for the Fairphone operating system. “We use Android because it’s open source,” says Olivier Hebert, Chief Technology Officer at Fairphone. “That gives us a full-featured open source operating system that doesn’t need much tweaking before it’s good to go.” The Fairphone 2 currently has 11 apps preloaded, and according to Olivier, the apps in the Google Play Store help keep the user experience competitive: “If you don’t go to the effort of installing Google apps, you’re ignoring out-of-the-box options that millions of customers know and want to use. Without Android and Google Apps we’d be at a major disadvantage.” Customer feedback on the user experience has been very positive so far, and although it’s still early days for the Fairphone, Android is set to be a mainstay of their formula for the future.
Android gives us a full-featured open source operating system that doesn’t need much tweaking before it’s good to go.Olivier Hebert, Chief Technology Officer, Fairphone
Fairphone launches the world’s first, sustainable modular Android smartphone.