Is The Fairphone Legit? (Fairphone 3 Plus Review)
Today we are going to be talking about the fair phone and whether or not this unique modular cell phone is the one that you should buy for yourself, so right off the top. I have to admit that this is not my phone. I didn’t test this for months at a time, it’s a loner, so i’ve only been using it for a week or two. So bear that in mind. We also had the awesome opportunity to interview boss, who is the founder of fairphone and a social entrepreneur based in the netherlands. We talked in depth about where fairphone’s going into the future the exciting things about this company that you might not know off the top and you can access the full interview that we had through our patreon page, which i’ll link down in the description. And on that note, this video is made possible by our patreon supporters. My goal in the future is to make content that i think, is important and making videos about fairphone might not be the most algorithmically viral choice, but i think it’s one that will help a lot of you make more sustainable choices in the future. So if you enjoy the content that we’re putting out on this channel, consider supporting us through there you’ll also get access to behind the scenes, content, early access to videos and our secret monthly podcast. So, thanks for all that in advance and let’s get into this phone, so full disclosure – i am not a tech reviewer.
If you are a part of this channel, you would probably know that, so this is not going to be a comprehensive, deep dive on all of the different details about this phone from a technological level. What i’m going to be doing is comparing this and my experience using it to my current phone, which is the iphone 11 pro for those of you who know the channel. You might have noticed that this is an upgrade for me. Indeed, i bought this iphone 11. Pro a couple of weeks ago to replace my aging iphone 8 plus, but that is something we’re going to talk about later in the video, so let’s hop back in time to when i originally unboxed this puppy. The box that you get your fair phone in is predictably simple, it’s one box with a simple sheath around it and it’s entirely plastic free. Once you get inside, you will see that you get a phone and a screwdriver so that you can repair it later. The box also reminds users that, when they’re done with their old phone, they can send it back to them now. At first glance, the phone is a little different than your typical smartphone it’s, a little lighter than i’m used to, and it has these bezels on the top and the bottom combine this with a thicker form factor and a plastic backing rather than the glass or steel That we’re used to nowadays and it’s kind of a different experience, the fairphone 3 plus retails for 4′ euros, which is about 500 us dollars.
That makes it a mid tier phone, not a flagship phone it’s, not sleek and tactile like an iphone is, but the buttons are clicky. The screen looks nice and overall, it looks like a high quality product. Repairability is one of the bigger things that fairphone has done with this device to make a more sustainable cell phone. They are way beyond the rest of the pack. In this regard, they get a 10 out of 10 on the ifixit website, whereas most iphones get about a six, so let’s see if we can do it. Music, oh yep, Music, wow, oh yeah, look at that that’s great see! This is actually really huge, because the only reason why i replaced my iphone 8 plus was because it ran out of storage and the battery life was crap on this phone. You can remove the battery with your hands and inside they have a micro sd slot where you can add additional storage. But when i first had my conversation with boss, he explained how the modularity of these phones is only one part of their mission as a company. Their primary focus is social innovation. Our innovation model is social innovation, so the most tangible stuff that is happening, of course, is is in the phone, but you don’t see many of the innovations we do. You know we have 100 recycled plastics we’re, going to incorporate a fair trade cobalt in the future that’s why we set up this supply chain project and everything comes together in the product and uh.
Of course, i i know – and i understand your question is like yeah, but but you know tell me what you know: how is the phone going? What is the next innovation on the phone you’re going to do right right, basically, that’s our innovation model is, is is happening behind the scenes. Boss and the fair phone team have made it their objective to innovate at a social level for the technology industry, they’ve even helped large scale. Tech producers like tesla source their minerals in a more ethical way. But as you’ve probably heard me say on this channel a dozen times, a great third party certified environmentally focused product is great, but if it doesn’t work and you don’t like using it, it was basically a waste of time. So what is this phone like to actually use? So in the past i have used an android phone. I owned a google pixel at one point and i didn’t hate it. The fairphone 3 plus works off of android 10. that’s, not the most up to date, operating system for android, but that’s, probably okay in most cases, but this was something interesting that boss pointed out. Basically, fairphone is relying on the rest of the technology world to innovate. Their products so that fairphone can easily adopt them once they become mainstream, fairphone waits for larger manufacturers to create new camera modules, new battery technology and then once they’ve been proven within the marketplace and come down in price fairphone adopts them into their own products.
This allows them to focus more energy on the way that those materials are sourced and creating a modular design that makes them last longer. Now, honestly, there is a big difference between the fair phone and the iphone that i’ve recently purchased side by side. You can just tell that the fair phone is a much bigger device, both in height and width and in thickness we’ve, been sort of brainwashed. To think that a thinner, more sleek looking device is what we want, and this is something that boss actually pointed out in our interview. You know we still suffer from electronic anorexia in a way. You know we want our phones, thinner and thinner, but you know just knowing that your phone, a thin phone, means that your battery will be glued to the inside that’s. You know it’s a result of something that we want and has been marketed. So the more we think about you know just ask yourself: why can’t i open my phone. Why do i need to pay a lot of money to replace the battery? Why do i just toss it in the drawer as the battery goes down? You know just ask yourself these questions that are related to the design of the phone, and maybe your view on how products aesthetically are designed. Also change. That is not just about aesthetics but it’s. Also about you know that design and the way we make things is actually designed in a way that that ecology has been taken into account and that you perceive that as something more beautiful.
So probably one of the most important things in a cell phone. For me as a content, creator is the camera, because i film and take photos of myself all the time on paper. The fair phone stacks up pretty well i’m, not going to recite all of the details of all the cameras for you, so instead i’m just going to put them all on the screen right now, so that you can read them and then i don’t have to say All them and like make sure i get them all right, because there’s a lot of numbers and everything, but in general you should be able to get the gist from that. Let’S. Take some photos so here’s some selfie footage from the iphone 8 on the selfie camera. This is the iphone 11 on the front facing camera and uh, and this is the fairphone forward facing camera. The video footage from the fairphone 3 plus is a little lower quality than what we get out of the iphone 8 and the iphone 11 pro. But these side by side comparisons, kind of show that it’s not that huge of a difference for everyday use. More intensive software specific features like slow motion, definitely illustrate a bit of a difference there for sure, but the fair phone performed extremely well in photos. I’M gon na be honest, the fair phone exceeded my expectations and, in my opinion, outperformed the iphone 8 plus in most cases. This is great because for a lot of people like myself, being able to take a great photo with the phone that you have in your pocket can be a deal breaker when you’re looking for your next device.
Now i don’t own a fair phone, and i know that really, if anyone should own a fair phone, it is me because i’m, the youtuber guy, who talks about how you don’t, need to be a hero to save the planet partially. It is because the fair phone isn’t available in canada but i’m sure i could have worked around that. If i really tried – and this is my excuse – that i tried to explain to boss – who remember – is the founder of fairphone. I consider myself one of the few brackets of people who use their phone professionally. I video for content creation. I edit videos on my phone. I store hundreds of thousands of videos and photos that i’m using all the time and fair phone is the phone that i really should have as like a sustainability youtuber like that’s the phone i should own but i’m i’m. Just i think it’s like almost there like truly there will be no reason why the fair phone isn’t, the phone that everyone could have in in a year or two people always have uh. You know they always have the nice excuse that they don’t want to go from ios to android um right yeah is. Is that a challenge for you guys? You know it’s it’s, even that if you just imagine how much google stuff you’re already using how much you’re already in that ecosystem of android absolutely i’m i’m, pretty sure that uh and i i’ve i’ve met a lot of people that went from from you know, ios To an android phone and they say it’s actually really seamlessly now so you’re saying that i have no excuse well, thanks bob.
I have no excuses anyway and wait till we get the new phone out and uh. You know it’s um, like i said, if you’re, if you’re a gamer and you’re you’re, you need your selfie uh camera and you need you know all these things like it has to be like super super high end, obviously there’s a difference between a 1200 phone and A a 500 phone which fairphone is you know for most people. I can tell you um and i i can’t speak for you and i i believe you, you probably have a very good excuse, but for most people they don’t have an excuse to have a fair phone. The reality is that pretty much everybody even me could live with a fair phone. We’Ve reached a point with technology that the innovations that went into this phone are only marginally better than the ones that are in a generation from three or four years ago, and fairphone is perfectly situated to take advantage of that, because the less aggressive that technological curve Is the more that fairphone can benefit as a reliable, repairable, alternative and honestly talking to boss was really inspiring for me, as somebody who talks about this kind of stuff every day, because you don’t really realize how innovative fairphone is until you understand their role within the Industry at large, not only are they doing things differently, they’re doing pretty much everything differently than the industry standard and believe it or not, they’re profitable too.
We talk about this and so much more in the full interview which, of course you can access on our patreon page. We talk about the future of fairphone, the future of technology in general and what it’s like to live in the netherlands. So if you are at all interested in getting extra goodies like this and being able to support the channel and what we do here, there’s a link to our patreon page down in the description.