Android 10 stable release arrives for the 7-year-old Fairphone 2

Fairphone 2
Fairphone 2 (Image credit: Fairphone)

What you need to know

  • The Fairphone 2 has received its stable Android 10 release.
  • Fairphone kicked off its public Android 10 beta in November of last year.
  • The company notes that the phone has so far received 7 years of software support.

Fairphone's mission is to build sustainable and ethical phones, and it stays true to that ethos. The company has finally released the stable version of Android 10 for the Fairphone 2 after months of beta testing (opens in new tab).

The company calls it an industry first for an Android phone as it marks the seventh year of providing software support for a device that launched in 2015 running Android 5 Lollipop. This means the legacy phone is now picking up its fourth Android upgrade since it skipped Android 8 Oreo.

That eclipses the three or four years of updates that many of the best Android phones (opens in new tab) typically get, despite their manufacturers' vast amounts of resources.

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It's essentially rare for any Android phone manufacturer to still be rolling out an OS update to its product six or more years after releasing it to the market. The only exception to that is, of course, Apple's iPhone lineup.

Although getting an Android update that's two generations behind doesn't normally make you kick up your heels, it's still an impressive feat for a device that's powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 chipset.

However, it seems like Android 10 is the last upgrade for the Fairphone 2. Fairphone's software engineer, Bharath Prakash, noted that it would not be feasible to upgrade the device to Android 11 or 12 due to various hardware limitations and its Linux kernel version.

Fairphone's latest move provides reassurance for anyone thinking of buying the Fairphone 4, with hopes that it'll get the same kind of support period in the foreseeable future. In addition, the company is currently beta testing Android 11 for the Fairphone 3 and 3+.

Meanwhile, Samsung might be following suit after promising four years of security updates (opens in new tab) and three generations of Android upgrades for its recent devices. The Google Pixel 6 series is also getting 5 years of Android software updates (opens in new tab).

Here's hoping that this becomes the norm for the rest of the Android OEMs.

Jay Bonggolto
News Writer

Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.