Fair Phone

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= "FairPhone’s mission is to bring a fair smartphone to the market – one designed and produced with minimal harm to people and planet". [1]

URL = http://www.fairphone.com/

"The first-ever Fairphone combines social values with smart, radically open design that considers the full lifecycle of the product. Worker welfare initiatives and conflict-free minerals put people first every step of the way. Transparency is paramount, from materials and production to pricing." [2]


"The current supply chain (from mineral extraction to manufacturing) is complicated involving many actors and geographies. Consumer pricing, profit before people and the planet and furious competition has led to pressure in the upstream supply chain, accelerating a race to the bottom. You have to dive deep into and take responsibility for the end supply chain that traditional companies have largely avoided until advocacy groups pressured them to do so. This includes issues like conflicts around mineral mining in Congo, poor working conditions in factories from Mexico to China, and the current business models that create “designed for the dump” models to sell more of these products when our planet is already reaching its limits. Designing and creating fair electronics can be a force of change and an attempt to curb current consumption models that fail to measure the environmental and social costs of production.

It takes partnership and collaboration from numerous stakeholders with expertise, knowledge and networks to achieve this goal.

We take this as a design challenge, that’s why we’ve decided to start with making a fair-(er) phone ourselves and learn from other initiatives and adopting best practice then we can find and translate what we’ve learned into a tangible product.

In order to design, create and market a fair(er) phone we have to understand the system around it.

This includes identifying current limitations and opportunities while coming up with better solutions, thereby fundamentally changing them. We know we can’t change the system overnight as a small player with little leverage, but we think we have to make it tangible by raising awareness and making step-by-step interventions. We want our consumers and other stakeholders to play an active role on this journey, share their ideas, and participate in the decision points that we will need to make.

FairPhone is a step-by-step journey

This way the phone also becomes a storytelling artifact, and as it tells the story we want it to create dialogue between all the stakeholders, from policy maker to consumers, from designers to marketeers, and it is already happening. It sheds light on the “dark matter” and makes us understand what actions are needed to change the system that produces our phones. The phone becomes a political object, in which we have to balance the interests of all stakeholders and come to a shared value.

FairPhone is the start of a movement for change much more than the end solution for a problem. Taking a step-by-step approach, FairPhone aims to make the story behind the production of electronics more transparent, raising the bar for the industry and giving consumers a choice for fairer electronics.' (http://www.fairphone.com/about/)


Maja van der Velden:

"For those living in Europe, there is the Fairphone. The first edition of this smartphone was produced through crowd-sourcing and shipped last December/January. It is not yet a modular phone - but I think that one is in the making. Only 25.000 Fairphones were produced in the first round. Spare parts and a repair manual are available. The second round consists of 35.000 Fairphones and the pre-sale starts in May.

The Fairphone is fair in many different ways (free/open source software, rootable, transparent pricing, non-conflict minerals, worker rights, ewaste solution, double sim, replaceable battery, etc.). The philosophy behind Fairphone is to have fewer mobile phones around, not more. Secondly, the real goal is not just a fair mobile phone, but a circular economy. As a Fairphone buyer, you become an investor in a workers welfare fund in China and an e-waste project in Ghana.

The Fairphone is not 100% fair and 100% perfect - but it is the best available at the moment. All this and more can be read on the Fairphone website/blog. Browse through the pages and blog entries - there is a lot of interesting information." (http://www.fairphone.com/)

Ecological Aspects

Mahdi Gheshlaghi:

"FairPhone is an open source “smartphone” which is going to be released in 3rd quarter 2013. According to its website, it is going to be “designed and produced with minimal harm to people and planet” (Fairphone, 2013).

According to its official website, ecological aspects of this product will be:

 Designed for durability; Fairphone development team wants a design that lasts, e.g. by using replaceable batteries (Fairphone, 2013).

 Use of recycled material; Through collaborating with partner recycling facilities (The solution, 2013), electronic waste, e.g. mobile phone scrap will be recycled and used in Fairphone (Fairphone, 2013).

 Designed for recycling and reuse; Fairphone is going to be a stable smartphone planned for reuse and recycling (Fairphone, 2013)." (http://p2pfoundation.net/Potential_of_Open_Design_for_Eco-Efficient_Product_Development)