All right, so the Fairphone is not all that it is cracked up to be – there is no balance to the Force that needs to be done, although on certain levels, some people might agree that there is a need for the smartphone manufacturing industry to encourage a change that will keep things sustainable in the long run. Apparently, the manufacturing process of smartphones do seem to come with its fair share of environmental and social issues, ranging from their use of conflict minerals all the way to the working conditions at the factory for the workers there. The Fairphone hopes to change that, being an idea from a social enterprise.
What kind of positive vibes does the Fairphone bring with it? Well, for starters, it will make use of conflict-free raw materials during its construction and manufacturing, while the workers who work at the assembly lines will be paid a fair wage, which in turn would reduce exploitation of manpower while raising the standard of living in the community around. Not only that, there is also the effort to set up e-waste recycling programs that will ensure that such consumer electronics devices will be recycled or disposed off properly at the end of their life cycle.
As for the materials used by the Fairphone, it will contain conflict-free tin where its soldering paste is concerned, hailing from conflict-free mines in the South Kivu Province, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The tantalum in its capacitors too, have been extracted from coltan sourced from Mai Baridi, Kisengo and Luba, which so happens to be conflict-free mines located in the northern part of the Katanga Province, DRC.
The other hardware specifications include a durable and scratch-resistant 4.3″ touchscreen display, 16GB of internal memory, cameras at the back as well as in front, a quad-core processor, and the Fairphone OS which is based on Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. Available in Europe for 310€ each, it remains to be seen whether it will be released worldwide or not.