The Dutch social enterprise Fairphone is pleased to announce the launch of their latest smartphone: the Fairphone 3. The new, improved modular phone builds on the company’s previous achievements to deliver a sleek and durable device that closes the gap between performance and sustainability.
From electronic waste and massive CO2 emissions to harsh working conditions and devastating sourcing practices, the smartphone industry is a huge contributor to some of the world’s most serious environmental and human rights problems. Since 2013, Fairphone has been pioneering new approaches to improve the way these products are made and create scalable models that can be replicated in the rest of the industry. While working to develop and produce more sustainable phones, Fairphone has made the supply chain more transparent but has also learned valuable lessons about the systemic limitations and challenges related to this sector.
The Fairphone 3 combines Fairphone’s ambitions for a fairer electronics industry with the insights it gained from creating two prior phones to achieve its most advanced modular phone to date. Fairphone has developed and refined the modular architecture to be more reliable and durable in a sleeker and slimmer design, building on the experience it gained producing the world’s first modular smartphone, Fairphone 2. The Fairphone 3 contains 7 modules, which have been designed to support easy repairs and support Fairphone’s goals for long-lasting and sustainable phones. Based on Fairphone’s research keeping the Fairphone 3 longer, while maintaining it, can save 30% of CO2 emissions or more. It’s long battery life, high-performance Qualcomm 632 processor and 12 MP Dual Pixel rear camera and 8 MP front camera with advanced software optimization, combine to deliver an outstanding camera experience especially in low-light conditions. The phone’s technical specifications deliver great performance even for demanding users. It’s competitive specifications including 64GB of memory, which can be expanded to over 256GB with MicroSD, robust Gorilla® Glass 5 and it’s modular architecture make the Fairphone 3 a phone that is designed to last. Fairphone 3 will be sold with sustainable and reusable packaging and is delivered with its own protective bumper for extra protection from everyday day knocks and bumps.
But the true differentiator is what Fairphone refers to as “fair specs”. With every new generation of phones it develops, Fairphone is expanding on existing projects and introducing new initiatives to make its supply chain fairer for all those involved. Fairphone is collaborating with the final assembly partner Arima to improve employee satisfaction by improving worker representation, health and safety and by paying a bonus to workers with the aim to bridge the gap between minimum and living wages in the factory. From a materials perspective, the phone is made with responsibly sourced and conflict-free tin and tungsten, recycled copper and plastics, and sources Fairtrade gold. Fairphone was the first electronics manufacturer to integrate Fairtrade gold into its supply chain. Fairphone is also in the process of setting up an initiative for better sourcing of cobalt, the key mineral for the energy transition. After an initial research phase, the program will go into implementation and will be connected to the FP3 supply chain. And to combat e-waste, the phone supports collection programs in countries like Ghana and will reward buyers for using Fairphone’s recycle program to return their previous phones. Fairphone continues its existing initiatives for more sustainable and fairer production of smartphones and has integrated them into the supply chain of Fairphone 3, together with more innovative projects that continue Fairphone’s vision for a fairer electronics industry.
Fairphone CEO Eva Gouwens sums up the company’s goals for the Fairphone 3, commenting:
“We envision an economy where consideration for people and the planet is a natural part of doing business and according to this vision, we have created scalable ways to improve our supply chain and product. We developed the Fairphone 3 to be a real sustainable alternative on the market, which is a big step towards lasting change. By establishing a market for ethical products, we want to motivate the entire industry to act more responsibly since we cannot achieve this change alone. “
Starting today, the Fairphone 3 is available for presale on Fairphone’s website and from strategic partners online for a suggested retail price of 450€*. The device will be released from September 3 and become available across Europe from selected (online) retailers and operators.
*Pricing may differ across countries due to different taxes and levies.