In 2013 Fairphone set out to make a smartphone that was both eco-friendly and concerned with the welfare of the workers in its supply chain. This approach meant that it was concerned with things as diverse as making the phone as modular as possible to ensuring that the workers who mine the metals it uses are well paid and cared for.
The latest version of the phone, Fairphone 3, is now shipping. While it will not win any prizes for biggest screen, best camera, looks etc. that’s not the point is it? So, let’s have a look at what you get for more than £400.
Firstly, it has 7 modules for making repairs easier, all shipped in reusable and sustainable packaging. You get a 5.7” screen, Snapdragon 632 SoC processor, 4GB RAM, 64GB of expandable storage, 3,000 mAh battery that supports fast charging and a 12MP main and 8MP selfie camera, running Fairphone OS, a slightly tweaked version of Android 9.
It has a chunky, last generation look when compared to the latest flagships around, but they say beauty is in the eye of the beholder and if you are environmentally minded, this phone will no doubt look beautiful to you.
In the aim of reducing waste, it does not come with any cables or earphones. Fortunately, it is equipped with a standard USB-C port, which means you can use any existing cable you already own for charging.
Rugged and long lasting
The modular design means that if a part breaks you can unscrew it and replace it with another quickly and easily. This feature is particularly useful for batteries, which have a habit of degrading over time. In fact, the whole ethos is based around a phone that is going to last as it comes with a clip-on bumper in the box, so that it is pretty rugged and able to survive a lot of knocks.
So, if you want to do your bit for saving the planet and are happy to hang onto your phone longer than the usual 1-2 years most people do, the Fairphone 3 is a good bet for you.