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Fairphone is manufactured using raw materials from conflict-free regions in Africa (D.R. Congo).

A completely open source, rooted-by-default hardware and software on which you can also install FirefoxOS, Ubuntu and Debian too (http://www.fairphone.com/#faq)

That's the first time I've ever heard "Conflict-free resources". What exactly does it mean? There are no wars going on in the regions they picked? What happens if a conflict starts before I get my phone? Can I get a refund?

It's a good question and I'm glad to see it asked.

I don't know the precise delineation, but there are some resources (tantalum, used in capacitors, is notorious for this) mined in regions of the world, especially Africa, which are run by regimes which don't respect the United Nation's definition of human rights. IOW, warlords firing machine guns over the heads of slave labor to sell the minerals to fund their weapons purchases.

So, it's not specifically about a named conflict, such as a war, but about some kind of traceability back to whether or not the suppliers were approved by some body. IDK which organizations do this.

Note that my description does not validate this phone and its traceability in particular. It may be just as backdoored and loopholed as the USDA definition of "organic" for all I know. However, I hope my explanation of "conflict-free resources" is useful as an ideal. And I hope this phone is actually taking marketshare from those manufactured with "conflictful" resources.

On a personal note, I've been driving myself crazy trying to choose the best smartphone to buy right now. I don't particularly care about games and I know I want Android. So this phone might just be the choice for me.

It means that the funds used for buying the resources don't fund wars.

this is not an absolute statement. For example, if you buy any resources in the US, you are indirectly funding wars through the US taxation apparatus and military. It's better qualified by saying the funds used for buying the resources are not predominantly extorted or directly controlled by military juntas.

Good point. Maybe I should say that the resources aren't directly nor officially used to fund wars.

And Chinese sources don't fund "wars" against Tibetan people?

DRC is hardly a conflict free region, or if it is right this moment, it is only because the genocide was so far reaching that there is no one left causing sufficient disturbance to meet whatever bar they've set.


From the article: - 45,000 people were dying daily as of 2009 - estimates on deaths due to the most recent conflict (deadliest since WWII) were 5,400,000 (though that number is in dispute, no one seems to be standing firmly behind another statistic). - 400,000 women are raped yearly (2011 statistic)


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