Connect Fairphone e/OS with Macbook (Mojave 10.14)

Hello, I want to connect my Fairphone 3+ with my MacBook to transfer data (pictures, files,…) but at my Macbook (with Mojave 10.14) the Fairphone deosn’t appear at the Finder or anywhere else… USB-Settings at the Fairphoe are at “File-Transfer”

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Apple don’t want you to use Android phones for obvious reasons, so they make file transfer less convenient, it seems.

Look for the “Android File Transfer” program on your Mac, or install e.g. OpenMTP.

And make sure you use a USB data cable, there are cables out there for charging only.


I found OpenMTP better than Android File Transfer for a number of reasons.

Or create a Linux Virtual Machine using .e.g. VirtualBox for Mac - file transfer Android <-> Linux “just works!” ™. That might take a bit longer than just running OpenMTP though :wink:

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Thanks a lot! I will try out OpenMTP! Sooner or later I will change from MacOS to Linux, but at the Moment I’m a bit shy… :slight_smile:

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if all you want to do is sync files, Syncthing is great to have cross-platform shares. I usually restrict it to the home wifi

Syncthing has a macOS build → Syncthing | Downloads

Recently got an independent iOS app… it’s limited, but if you have any other iOS devices still at least you can shuffle some files around → Native iOS port / GUI · Issue #102 · syncthing/syncthing · GitHub / ‎Möbius Sync on the App Store

As is NextCloud: phone client available in F-Droid and Aurora Store; desktop clients for al platforms here

Works fine with

nextcloud is very much client-server, syncthing is peer to peer and its protocol (BEP) technically interesting + powerful.

nextcloud is great for sharing to outside parties, syncing with *dav protocols (contacts, calendar…). But for the usecase “files between devices of one person, with no outside sharing” syncthing is an easy choice, no maintenance.

If you restrict it to your local network, it will use the full available bandwith, internet uplink is not relevant, it can do net local discovery.

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mac and android is and always will be a fiddling…

But both are great Operating Systems, and Macs are fine computers, so it’s worth the fiddle :wink:

MAC is nothing else than Unix, so you can use Linux and it’s no longer a problem to connect es Android to PC :wink:

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My idea was to use the FairPhone like a normal USB-device on my Macbook. Like there is a micro-SD card inside, I thought I will be able to interchange files and data (Music, Pictures) between Mac and FP like with a normal Storage… Syncing is another question… also how to make a simple backup of apps, settings and data.
@Linux vs MacOs: I need MacOs because I’m using Lightroom,Indesign,Photoshop, but I don’t want to use the AdobeCloud Versions, so I don’t upgrade to Catalina (only 64bit Apps)
But one day there will be no longer support for Mojave and I have to make a decision…

In that case you should have a look at MTP for Mac

I tried it briefly and it seems to work, but I went with OpenMTP instead because

  • I don’t need Mac <-> Android connectivity that often
  • Open MTP is ree, and open source, MTP for Mac is not open source, and is free initially but you need to register, and maybe later pay

But for your use case MTP for Mac might work

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If you have a MacBook Pro / another option to read SD cards, you will insert the microSD card from your phone into the Mac - and it will just work

That’s how I solved this issue

Hi Lichtzeichner,

since I know OpenMTP thanks to the hint of @AnotherElk I can highly recommend it!

It runs on my MacBook Air i5 1,1/16/1 TB (2020) with macOS 11.6 and I can copy all my data from internal memory of the FP3+ and also all data from my microSDXC SanDisk Extreme Pro 400 GB via the USB cable.

It’s great and it’s open source!

Hi there!
I tried to install and use OpenMTP but it causes restarts on my mac and the window doesn’t show any text (see screenshot)

Did you look at MTP for Mac as mentioned above?

OK, I can start OpenMTP if the FairPhone is not connected via USB. If I connect my Fairphone,
the Macbook crashes (restarts) or there is a Message that free trial of MTP is experied (see screenshot)

No, I wanted to try first the open source OpenMTP…

Any help how to install and use openMTP?

Edit: Sorry your question refers to OpenMTP, my response is all about MT for Mac :frowning:

Download the package installer from here:

Then follow the instructions from the FAQ titled How to install on this page;

That worked from me. If you want to continue using it you will need to register - it’s still free. I chose not to and followed the How to uninstall FAQ

Good luck

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