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based.quest - GUEST ENTRY: FairPhone 4 Review - A Farmers Utilitarian Point Of View

Posted on 26/02/2022 09:33:12 PM

This guest blog is written by BieHDC

I have been using the FairPhone 4 for 2 Months now and here is my experience with it.

Why is the FairPhone 4 interesting for me?

As a Farmer, I am very interested in Repairability, Sustainability and Longevity of Machinery. This is the standard for my equipment, but it is not anymore for technology. Also, since I expect fair prices for the goods i am producing, I should also pay a fair price for things I am buying. The Motivation behind the FairPhone overlaps with my own points of view, that is why I decided to buy one as a replacement for my Nokia 6710 Navigator.

A look at the relevant Specifications

The phone is powered by a Snapdragon 750G Octa-Core Processor and a Adreno 619 GPU. There are 2 versions available, one with 6GB RAM and 128GB Flash Memory and with 8GB RAM and 256GB Flash Memory. I got myself the latter because due to slow internet in my area, I am caching a lot of files and barely delete anything. Both of the Models also give you a MicroSD Card Slot with support up to 256GB space. We have a 16cm (6.3 inch) display with a resolution of 1080 times 2350 pixel and a refresh rate of 60 hertz. It has basic dust and splash protection which was also named as the reason why they could not made it with a 3.5mm headphone jack. The Back camera gives you 48 Megapixel maxing out at 4K-30FPS or 1080P-60FPS for filming. It has a 3905mAh battery with up to 20 Watt Fastcharging support. And we have a Fingerprint Sensor which is integrated in the powerbutton, however, due to outdoor-with-gloves usage, I did not test the sensor.

Additions

Since I care about my devices, I also got a screen protector and a cover. This is the first USB-C device in this household, so I also got a USB-C Cable and a charger.

Price

At the time I bought it, the 10. of December 2021, the total Price for everything was 777 Euros straight.

First Impressions

It's decent weight of about 225g made it feel very positive for me. It does not feel like I am loosing it accidentally. While it lies good in my hands while holding it, it is also a tick too tall. I can not reach the top of it with one hand when holding it normally. At the software side everything is working smoothly, no weird UI lags or unexpected nonsense. The speakers are loud enough to deal with tractor noises.

Design and Display

I am not someone who has a hard stance on Appearance, hence I got the gray coloured phone and the gray coloured Cover and I am not bothered by the notch at all. However it would be interesting to be able to get a display without it for people like me who do not need the front camera. The Display offers a wide range of brightness and I am able to turn it down in darkness as much as I want and it also goes bright enough for outside with sunshine.

The Drop-Test

I did not intend to do one, it just happened when I accidentally had it fall out of my jacket from about 1 Meter height and right with the screen down. But I am pleased to tell you that it survived just fine and the screen protector did its job.

Software

It comes with the default Android experience with one extra app and their custom theme, so no useless bloat. The last Android version I used was 4.4 so I can not really tell you about that part. Eventually /e/os support appeared too, which is exciting since I want to degoogle my life, but I did not install it as of now.

Camera Samples

I am not a photographer, I just occasionally take pictures of cats and scenery.

Gaming

While I mostly play light games like 2048 (yes I am still playing it in 2022, fight me) and sudoku, I have also installed SuperTux and SuperTuxKart. While SuperTux runs smooth, SuperTuxKart has sections where it stutters a bit, but the overall experience is good. I have also played with Steam Remote Play through the Steam Link App which also works just fine.

Battery Lifetime

You get the expected 8 hours of screen-on time if you slow-charge, meaning it takes about 2 hours. I took measurements for all charge cycles in these 2 Months and when you fast charge you also get slightly less screen-on time. Since I am not a lot on the phone I get around 4 to 7 days of usage per charge. Since I was uneducated on Fastcharging, I assumed the device itself controls how to charge, which is not the case. FairPhone has this nice faq entry which should get more attention.

What would make this phone even more interesting to farmers?

An advanced Camera, not in picture quality, but in having a thermal camera. You can make good use of this in a lot of scenarios, like when checking the food stock quality or investigating damage to equipment. The modularity of the FairPhone would even offer the possibility to have this as a drop-in module for those who want or need it. A rugged Case. People with gloves on do not make use of the fingerprint sensor anyway, so you could just make the power button a proper button like the volume keys and have a cover for the USB-C Port. I just hacked around to make up for this, but a proper nice case would be really good. The Software does not let me map a volume key to turn on the flashlight when the screen is off, but we farmers often need a quick flashlight. This would be a really good feature to have.

Conclusion

I like it. And if you agree with my assessment, you should consider it as your next phone.

Have a nice day



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