Fairphone Open ships F-Droid Privileged Extension!

Fairphone has taken a big step towards making a fully free Android phone! They already have Fairphone Open, an alternate version of Android that does not include any proprietary apps. The built-in Fairphone Updater makes it really easy to switch a Fairphone away from the Google Android version to Fairphone Open. And now, Fairphone Open includes F-Droid! That means it is a fully functional device, removing the requirement to flash extra packages to get an app store. It also means that F-Droid works without enabling “Unknown Sources”. Then your Fairphone Open can automatically update apps and it’ll have a smoother install experience where you just need to press install once, and the whole process will finish in the background (when you are ready for background updates, go to F-Droid’s Settings to enable them).

F-Droid support in Fairphone Open is still beta, so for now, only Privileged Extension is built into Fairphone Open. So you will still have to download F-Droid and install it as a regular app. It will automatically find and use the Privileged Extension built into Fairphone Open. We are working on an F-Droid installer as part of the Fairphone Updater to make that process really easy.

For now, these are the steps you need to do to have the full F-Droid experience with Fairphone Open:

  1. download F-Droid.apk and verify it
  2. enable “Unknown Sources” in Settings -> Security
  3. find FDroid.apk in Downloads and click to install it
  4. confirm the install on the system’s install screen
  5. disable “Unknown Sources”