07 October 2020
Update: March 26, 2021
It took Fairphone nine months to roll out the stable Android 9 Pie update to its Fairphone 2 phone after the beta release. The phone was originally shipped with Android 5 Lollipop five years ago. While it is good to see that the company has upgraded its five years old phone on the OS level, it is disheartening to see it getting updated to an old OS version.
It might not seem like a big deal, but trust us, it is. This is the only smartphone to receive an upgrade to Android 9 and we had to build the operating system without any support from chip-maker Qualcomm.
Fairphone has officially announced that the Android 9 roll-out starts from March 25th, and will continue until April 18th.
Original Post (June 17, 2020)
Fairphone 2, the first modular phone that was made available for purchase in 2015 by a Dutch startup is now receiving the Android 9 Pie. Receiving a 2018 version of Android OS in 2020 sounds odd but it is what it is. The phone was initially shipped with Android 5 and gained the Android Nougat in 2018 but since then the phone has received no major updates. It is only now that the phone is seeing a new major OS upgrade, which is itself an older version of Android.
Fairphone has announced the arrival of the beta version of Android 9 via Twitter. Fairphone tweets,
"A beta version of Android 9 is now available for Fairphone 2! This makes it one of only a few Android phones released in 2015 to still receive continued software support and we couldn’t be prouder," with hashtags, including “#daretocare #longevity #sustainability” for which the Fairphone 2 is known for.
Fairphone 2 was designed to have a higher life expectancy (5 years) than other phones. And the phone looks to be adhering to the vision that the creators set for it long ago. The internals of Fairphone 2 have long been stopped supporting by the manufacturers but it is great to see a phone receiving the OS upgrade treatment even after five years. The Fairphone 2 may not be a fine fettle but at this age, it is still capable of receiving and operating an OS upgrade, no matter the OS version is a little older.
To the uninitiated ones, Fairphone 2 carries a 5-inch Full HD display, Snapdragon 801 processor, 2GB RAM. It was the first smartphone to be awarded a rare 10/10 score at iFixit for repairability.