There are a few angles to the Fairphone 5. The key one is right in the name – fair – the device is made by people who want to help make the world more sustainable. The people who build the phone are paid a living wage and will recycle your old phone for you.
The Fairphone 5 comes in a recycled paper box with a few leaflets and nothing else.
The other part of the Fairphone 5 is it’s built to last. The company behind the phone gives a 5-year warranty and at least 8 years of software support. And, you can change quite a bit of the phone’s integral components yourself, using nothing more than a Phillips head screwdriver.
There are ten swappable modules in the Fairphone – the OLED display, the rear and front cameras, the USB port, and the battery. You dont even need tools to change the battery, thanks to the removable back panel.
Wrenching on the Fairphone is easy
That brings us to the third, and to us at least, the most profound angle of the Fairphone 5. It feels retro in a good way. It all starts with the feel in the hand – it’s a chunky, wide phone with big curved metal edges. It’s a big contradiction to the current style of phone – no unnecessarily thin frame, no excessive flatness, no pompous materials.
The display is surrounded by big black bezels. The removable back cover is an ode to a simpler time when you could open up your phone, take things out, and bring other things in. Good times.
The simple and comforting trend continues with the software. It’s as plain as Android can get, despite this being the very latest version 13. But the phone starts at a 60Hz refresh rate (there’s a 90Hz option) and with on-screen buttons (gestures are here as well). It’s as if we’re back in the early days of 2019 phones.
The Fairphone 5 could’ve just as easily been called the Fresh Air Phone 5, although it wouldn’t have the same ring to it, we admit. Our review is on its way, so stay tuned!