In this episode, we look at how to get a free smartphone operating system on the Fairphone 3 (and many other phones), thanks to a great free OS called /e/.


The LXCast episode #2 on the Fairphone 3 when it came out


Two solutions for a free OS:

1 lineage OS – free android with the Gapps removed

2 the /e/ project !! A „de-googled“ operating system – actually a fork of lineage OS – this is what I‘m going to talk about here.


Background articles

An article about /e/ on ZDNet (2019)

The research paper on Google Data Collection by Professor Douglas C. Schmidt, Vanderbilt University (2018) – learn how and how often normal Android phones send your data to Google servers.

Another background article on tracking (in German) based on research from a Norwegian journalist


More about /e/

/e/ uses MicroG services, a replacement for Google’s libraries on /e/ with purely open-source implementations.

The man behind the /e/ project: Gael Duval, pioneer of Open Source, Mandrake, Ulteo…

Gael’s article outlining his vision for /e/

You can buy a FP3 and an FP3 + with /e/ pre-installed here


Installing /e/ on your phone

Over 110 devices supported: from Asus to Google, to Oneplus and Xiaomi

How to install it on the FP3

Privacy ratings of apps:


Alternative Android Launchers:

KISS launcher

Simple launcher


I recommended you add these apps:

Antennapod – podcast client

FairEmail or simple email

Fennec (Firefox)


Newpipe for watching youtube without being tracked


Backup and Recovery

Backup via adb is apparently broken… Not the fault of /e/!!

You cannot simply flash a new recovery, such as TWRP, to flash images or backup, instead, you can use this method launching TWRP from your PC


How to support /e/ OS

Donate or become a member to keep the project going


That’s all for this episode, feel free to add any comments below!

Credits: Theme Music: Jazzhar, “Room with a View” CC-BY-SA, check him out on Jamendo and on Free Music Archive



The Fairphone 3 (photo: Fairphone CC-BY-SA)

In this podcast I take a look at the Fairphone 3, a few months after its launch, share my first impressions, and take an outlook at free operating systems hopefully soon available for it.
The new Fairphone was announced in late August, supposed to ship mid-september, and finally arrived in mid-october in my mailbox. The Dutch company aims for recycling of materials, fair working conditions for the employees in the Taiwanese factory that produces it, and on the rare earths coming being mined in areas without war and without child labour.

The problem though: Currently the Fairphone 3 only works with Android 9 with the full Google Apps, which means Google is regularly looking over your shoulder when you use the phone.

Not great for privacy-aware users! We look at alternative OSes and when they may be ready for installing.


Contents of the FP3 box: Headphones, phone and screwdriver, catchy slogans

Fairphone forum post on alternative OSes

FP3 discussion thread


Background on the Fairphone philosophy:

Interview of Fairphone founder Bas van Abel on the Team Human Podcast

TechCrunch Article on the Ethics behind the Fairphone


Where to look for alternative OSes:

UBPorts, the community port of Ubuntu Touch (Unity)

the /e/ foundation


(Lineage OS and Jolla do not have pages on the Fairphone 3 yet.)

PostMarket OS

… And a Tin-foil hat setup, if you really don’t want to be spied on by Google