How many electronic devices do you own? Cisco predicts that the number of mobile devices will exceed the number of people on earth by the end of this year. And by 2016, they predict we’ll have 1.4 mobile devices per person.
The question on many people’s minds, however, is how long each of these devices will last. We know that Americans upgrade to a new cell phone about once every 22 months—but does that mean the life of that phone should end there?
Probably not. Think about yourself: do you usually get a new phone because yours is broken or because there’s a newer, better phone you want?
You’ve probably wondered this same thing about your other electronics—you know, the other ones we use everyday, like TVs or computers. How long do these devices last?
A recent Consumer Reports survey determined which of our gadgets have the highest repair (AKA failure) rates. Laptop computers three to four years old are at 36%, desktops 32%, LCD TVs 15% and plasma TVs 10%. By looking at that, we can see that TVs and desktops tend to live a little longer—and it makes sense. Both are sedentary electronics, while your laptop likely travels.
It’s pretty clear that mobile devices tend to have shorter life spans. However, there are steps you can take to lengthen the life of your electronics. Use protective cases and screen covers for phones, tablets and laptops. Extend the battery life of your device by letting it run down completely once a month. Avoid extreme temperatures, as they can lessen the life of your device.
In a world like this, you’re bound to cycle through gadgets pretty regularly. There’s nothing wrong with it—just make sure you do it responsibly. Don’t ever throw away old electronics, but instead recycle them. If you’re upgrading, consider selling your old electronics for cash to put toward the upgrade.
Which gadget have you had the longest? Shortest? Share your electronics lifespan stories by leaving a comment!