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Hardware Life Expectancy

Hardware Life Expectancy
Ray Hawkins | 05-10-20

As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end and that old computer or laptop that you love dearly is no different. There comes a time when it needs to be replaced by something newer but how do you know if it is time?

The life expectancy is usually about 3-4 years for laptops and desktops and 6-8 years for servers. There are many other devices such as firewalls, printers, switches that do need replacing eventually as well but the workstations are the most notable items with the most impact. 

How long can you expect a computer to last?

To explain this, there are 3 distinct phases for hardware in its lifecycle – the early life, the useful life and the wear out phase. 

The early life stage is generally about one year long, and the most common failure is hardware manufacturing or deployment. Factory defects during manufacturing and faulty parts are generally the weakest link during this time frame and devices will have manufacturer warranty to prevent this. 

The useful life stage past the initial deployment usually presents no issues. There can be random chance failures such as an update breaking something or spillages and physical damage to the devices. These are very uncommon compared to the failures in the other stages. Most of the problems are fixable or might require a clean wipe and reinstall but in some extreme cases of physical damage, the machine might have to be replaced.

The wear out stage comes at the end of the hardware lifecycle and this is where the wear and tear of daily grind takes it toll on the moving parts inside a computer. The hard drives might get scratches or the battery of the device might no longer hold a charge. At this point, the recommendation is to replace the entire device rather than trying to replace parts since there is a good chance something else will break soon.

Knowing this, we can anticipate and pre-emptively replace your machines before failure rather than after it, to minimise damage and data loss. Apart from imminent failure, there are many other reasons to upgrade. Newer devices and software have better security and features such as hard drive encryption to prevent data theft. More modern technologies also offer better features such as faster USBs, better WiFi and Bluetooth. 

If you’re unsure whether an upgrade is due soon and for your IT solutions needs, feel free to speak to your account manager or for new clients interested in joining the Qbit family, please reach out to our sales team on 6364 0600. 

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