No Android manufacturer can compete today with the update times that Apple offers for the iPhone, but there is one company that comes very close: Fairphone.
Following in the footsteps of the Fairphone 2, the Fairphone 3 will also receive the industry’s best seven years of Android operating system support.
The Fairphone continues to outperform the big manufacturers with far more features than it has, and it does so even as component vendors like Qualcomm have dropped support for the phone’s core components.
Fairphone suggests that Qualcomm is the biggest obstacle to long-term Android support
The company announced today that the Fairphone 3, released in 2019, will extend its support through 2026, marking seven years of updates. The company has also just released Android 13 for the Fairphone 3. Google’s own 2019 phone, the Pixel 4, stopped receiving updates in October 2022.
Our goal is to support Fairphone 3 for at least 5 years after launch providing software updates through the end of August 2024. But since longevity is one of our core values, we’re aiming to get 2 more years of support, taking us all the way to 2026!
—Fairphone (@Fairphone) July 10, 2023
Fairphone also strives to make sustainable smartphonesdesigning their products to be repairable and selling replacement parts online.
While seven years of updates is incredible, the only thing Fairphone can be blamed for is that updates don’t occur on a regular cadence. In fact, the company skipped Android 12 to offer Android 13 due to all the work behind it. Monthly security updates probably won’t come as regularly either.
Even so, the fact that Fairphone is doing this with a fraction of the budget of the big companies shows that the usual excuses from Android manufacturers are not valid. Any company could offer longer support if they wanted to.