FP4. Factory reset (erase all data)

You should perform a factory reset of your Fairphone:

  • To protect your data when you are giving your device to someone else (i.e., selling, gifting, lending, recycling, or repairing it);


  • To solve an issue when troubleshooting did not help, test the SIM card(s), remove your SD card, and troubleshoot your phone in Safe mode.


Back up your data

Before you proceed, we recommend you back up your data.
Performing a factory reset will wipe all your data, such as photos, sound recordings, downloaded apps, and app settings.


Erase all data (factory reset)

Fairphone starts normally

If your Fairphone 4 boots normally, perform a factory reset via the Settings menu.
When possible, we recommend using this procedure to avoid triggering the Factory Reset Protection (FRP). You can read more details about FRP at the end of this article.

  1. Go to SettingsSystemAdvanced → Reset optionsDelete all data (factory reset).
  2. Tap the button Erase all data.
  3. Insert your PIN Code if required. You will also have to tap again on the button Erase all data.


Fairphone does not boot anymore.

If your Fairphone 4 does not boot into Android anymore, you will have to perform the reset using the system recovery:

  1. Remove any USB-C cable and turn off your Fairphone 4. If you cannot turn your device off, remove the battery for about 5 seconds, then put it back in.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Down button.
  3. Insert a USB-C cable connected to the power (can either be a power outlet or a computer).
  4. Release the Volume Down button as soon as you see the FAIRPHONE logo.
  5. Use the Volume buttons to select the option Recovery mode (on top of the screen).
  6. Press the Power button briefly to select.
    Wait for a couple of seconds. The FAIRPHONE logo will appear briefly. Then you will see the Android recovery menu.
  7. Use the Volume buttons to select the option Wipe data/factory reset.
  8. Press the Power button briefly to select.
  9. Use the Volume buttons to select the option Factory data reset.
  10. Press the Power button briefly to select.
  11. Use the Volume buttons to select the option Reboot system now.
  12. One last time, press the Power button briefly to select.

You are done! The first boot will take longer than usual, as the system has to initialize.

  • In case you want to leave the recovery system and not continue with the factory reset, select Reboot system now. Alternatively, you can just briefly remove the battery.


After the reset

Test your device again

If you did a Factory reset to fix a software issue, we recommend you NOT to restore your data. Instead, test your phone for a day or two.
If the issue is gone, start installing your favorite apps again, a few at a time.


If you are giving the device away

If you performed the reset to sell or gift the phone to someone else, you can now proceed to do so without worrying about your personal information.


Google Factory Reset Protection (FRP)

On Android, performing a factory reset via system recovery will NOT delete any Google account login information stored on the phone.
It is a safety measure Google implemented with Android 6 to add an extra layer of security. This way, someone who stole your phone can not change the Google account assigned to your device to a different one. As soon as you reboot the phone, you will have to log into the same Google account linked to it before the reset.

If you can not access this account even though it is yours, contact Google to help you gain access. If you can not access this account because it is not yours, contact the person who gave or sold you the device.

If you are planning on selling your Fairphone, follow the instructions for Fairphone boots normally from above.


If after reading the article you need more help, get in touch with our Customer Support.