European sustainable smartphone model Fairphone is dipping a toe within the US market by making its flagship repairable handset that can be purchased there for the primary time by way of one other collaboration with e/OS, a French privacy-focused not-for-profit open supply OS maker that gives a “deGoogled” cell working system.
The Dutch moral electronics social enterprise stays targeted on promoting modular package in its house area. However asserting a pilot to promote considered one of its smartphone fashions within the US as we speak — particularly the Murena Fairphone 4 with /e/OS — it stated it’s eager to be taught extra in regards to the market the place it’s seen some curiosity in its gadgets.
The Fairphone 4 was first launched in Europe again in September 2021. And whereas, at a look, it might probably appear like a fairly typical (barely chunky) Android smartphone its superpower is that it’s modular by design — which means it’s repairable and upgradeable with out the necessity to purchase an entire new handset.
Commenting on the pilot in a press release, outgoing CEO Eva Gouwens stated: “We all know primarily based on suggestions we now have acquired that there are a lot of individuals inquisitive about Fairphone within the US. Nevertheless, presently our principal focus is on the European market. This collaboration with e/OS/ is a good alternative for us to pilot promoting gadgets within the US market with a long-standing companion and be taught extra in regards to the American market.”
Fairphone’s mission is all about boosting machine longevity to shrink environmental impression, quite than monetizing obsolescence to maintain shoppers shopping for extra new stuff. Additionally it is very targeted on equity round working circumstances — therefore the moral side — requiring its manufacturing companions to decide to a dwelling wage program, for example.
The Fairphone 4 sometimes runs Google’s Android OS — the handset mannequin ran Android 11 out-of-the-box at launch — however the model of the flagship 5G smartphone that’s been made out there to US consumers is totally deGoogled. (e/OS is a fork of Android that’s stripped of proprietary Google companies in a bid to lock down consumer privateness.)
Gaël Duval, Murena CEO and /e/OS founder, stated the not-for-profit it excited to supply Fairphone’s machine to the US market. “We’re excited to deliver high-quality sustainable telephones with superior privateness options to the USA. With the inclusion of our pro-privacy working system /e/OS, we’re proud to supply customers a tool that not solely lasts longer but in addition protects individuals’s private knowledge. At Murena, we’re satisfied that that is the proper mixture for a extra moral telephone,” he stated in a press release.
Native pricing for the Fairphone 4 on the Murena online shop is listed as between $629.90 and $699.90 (transport inside every week) — though Fairphone’s RRP are set slightly decrease: $599 for the 6GB/128GB model and $679 for the 8GB/256GB variant.
Only one wrinkle: It’s solely being really useful to be used with T-Cellular and MVNOs primarily based on the T-Cellular community within the US, with the pair warning that utilizing Fairphone 4 with different US carriers is “not really useful”.
It will likely be attention-grabbing to see how a lot US curiosity there may be in an iPhone and (Google) Android various that packs sustainable and moral smarts.
Whereas Apple has been dipping a toe into repairability — seemingly with an eye fixed on ‘proper to restore’ rules coming down the pipe — its hermetically sealed gadgets sometimes rating terribly for repairability. Whereas Fairphone’s modular-by-design package, with screwdriver included, is the unrivalled king of the hill on this entrance.