A smartphone that lasts a decade? Yes, it’s possible.

What would a smartphone look like if it could last for 10 years?

It’s a question that most of us have not had the luxury of pondering. That’s because many smartphones are designed to be replaced every two or three years. And Apple, Samsung and other handset makers unveil new models — along with big marketing campaigns — each year, encouraging us to upgrade.

But bear with me and fantasize for a moment.

If a smartphone were designed to last a decade, it would probably be made so that we could simply open it up to replace a part like a depleted battery or a cracked screen. Many of its components would be able to be upgraded — if you wanted a better camera, you could just swap out the old one for a newer, more powerful one. You could also download software updates from the phone’s maker indefinitely.

Sensible and sustainable, right?

Thinking of what such a device might be like is especially relevant now as phone season — that time of year when tech companies blitz us with new models — begins again. On Wednesday, Apple unveiled the iPhone 14, which bears a striking resemblance to its predecessor. Also this week, Google announced plans to show new Android phones in October. And last month, Samsung introduced an array of cellphones that fold like books.

These latest wares underscore how today’s smartphones aren’t made for longevity. Most of the gadgets come tightly sealed up with glue to keep you out of them. Parts, like cameras and screens, are impossible to upgrade a la carte. Software updates are guaranteed for only a finite amount of time, usually two years for Androids and about five years for iPhones.

Keeping us on such short cycles of smartphone ownership is great for the tech companies and their coffers — but maybe not so much for us and our wallets.

Don Norman, a former vice president for advanced technology at Apple and the author of nearly two dozen books on design, said smartphone makers were guilty of treating consumer technology as if it were fashion wear, releasing products each year that become harder to repair and adding features that hasten obsolescence.

“You want to make the computer out of one piece of metal, and you want it to be as thin as possible,” Norman said. “So you had to make the battery with no case so it gets really hard to get to. You use glue instead of screws.”

Yet the idea of a longer-lasting phone needn’t be a fantasy. One already exists: the $580 Fairphone 4 made by a startup, Fairphone, in Amsterdam. The Fairphone 4, which is sold only in Europe, has a plastic cover that can be easily removed to expose its innards. Its components can be swapped out in minutes by removing a few ordinary screws.

Read original article here

Denial of responsibility! Bulletin Reporter is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – [email protected] bulletinreporter.com . The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Leave a comment

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More