Since most of us only see the finished product, not many of us really think about what’s going on behind the scenes, like who makes our phones, the working conditions of factories in China and India, where materials are sourced, who sources these materials, and so on. This is something that the folks at Fairphone have tried to address with the Fairphone 1 that was launched in 2013.
The handset was essentially marketed as a handset where materials for components are sourced responsibly and do not abuse human rights while mining for them. It will also be assembled by suppliers with a good track record for employment conditions. However after 4 years of being in existence, support for the Fairphone 1 has officially come to an end.
According to a blog post on its website, Fairphone’s CEO Bas writes, “Over time, the possibilities for continuing to support the Fairphone 1 have steadily decreased. It is now clear that we can’t keep spending resources on finding new options and loopholes without negatively impacting our company’s future.”
He adds, “We’ve worked continuously to find new suppliers and convince them to keep making the parts – for example, we’ve worked with two different manufacturers to try to keep batteries in stock. However, after exploring every option within our financial means, the minimum orders required to produce new batches of spare parts is beyond what we can afford.”
Basically what this means is that owners of the handset will no longer be able to repair it in the future since the components are no longer available, but given that the phone is around 4 years old, perhaps it could be time for a new one anyway.