How “fair” is the Fairphone?

How “fair” is the Fairphone?

The „fair” smartphone has received a lot of attention recently. Early 2014 about 25,000 buyers opted for the device. So the supplier, non-profit organization Waag Society in Amsterdam has launched a second tranche – which is almost sold out, too.

In an article for Germanys leading electronics industry weekly “Markt & Technik” I take the example of the Fairphone, in order to discuss the possibilities of a fair electronics value chain.

It is far to go yet. But the project gives hope because it shows a lot of approaches that can help to transform even the complex electronics supply chain. And it confirms what studies were suggesting for some time: The opportunities for producers to differentiate only by technology and price are constantly declining. Consumers tend to make their decisions whether to buy or not in favour of the brand, which convincingly demonstrates to be sustainable also in the production process. That is of interest for OEMs and network operators. They can be met at Fairphone’s Amsterdam office, where they are going to learn more about sustainable value chains.

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