It’s certainly not for everyone, but the Fairphone 5 is the perfect phone for some people – about one fifth of voters in last week’s poll can see themselves using this devices for the next 8 years, happy in the knowledge that they have a phone that is kind to the environment and to people and one that is easy to repair at home.
Many say that they already use phones for 4-5 years, even models that weren’t really designed to last that long. The Fairphone meanwhile is built with longevity in mind – you only need to look at the 5 year warranty to see that the company really believes in this product.
Some had doubts whether Fairphone will keep its word, but the company kept updating the Fairphone 2 for seven years, so it already has an excellent track record. The Fairphone 3 and 3+ (from 2019 and 2020, respectively) might get support until 2026.
Anyway, some still have their doubts – is OLED really the best choice? Modern displays have more or less solved burn-in, but 8 years is a long time. And what about that chipset, will it really be fast enough for software and games in 2031? Could Fairphone have added more RAM and storage? It’s not a cheap phone, after all.
Indeed, at €700/£650 the Fairphone 5 is too expensive for around a fifth of voters. A positive spin on this is that if the company manages to find some cost savings during the production run and offers some discounts, it can double its potential market.
But it will still be a small market, though. Fairphone is an EU company that operates mostly in the EU. And this is the biggest issue that the phone faces, most people in the world just can’t buy one. Maybe a different company can take on the hurdle of wider availability, but right now you if you’re not in Europe, you can’t have one.
Anyway, if you do get one, you might find a use for it for years to come – as some point out, old phones are still useful for certain things, even when after you stop using them as a daily driver. And unlike most other old phones, this will be up to date on its security updates even in the early 2030s.