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How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 3:44 pm
by yules
Hello Bogleheads,

This is probably a basic question, but I hope that you can bear with a novice!

I was helping my mom with a tech issue this morning and noticed that her phone OS (Android) is version 6.0 (“ marshmallow”), which is no longer supported and I suppose compromises her security, even though she doesn’t use the phone much more than to text and call.

So I was wondering if there is a good, reliable website or service that tracks versions of hardware and software (Windows, Android, MAC, etc.) that people can check to see if their devices or apps are outdated and need to update or maybe buy a new device entirely.

Thank you for your thoughts!
Yules

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:27 pm
by BoomerM3
Many systems will update themselves if you give permission and configure the system to do so. Check the settings on each device. It's a one-time effort.

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:58 pm
by yules
BoomerM3 wrote: Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:27 pm Many systems will update themselves if you give permission and configure the system to do so. Check the settings on each device. It's a one-time effort.
Good idea, I will try that! I also have to figure out a way to help my mom recognize when things just aren’t good anymore (like I don’t think she has Windows 95, lol, but if she has Windows 7, that eventually gets outdated, or maybe the hardware just can’t keep up), but I think you gave me a good start.

Thank you very much!
Yules

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 5:45 pm
by adamthesmythe
> she doesn’t use the phone much more than to text and call.

Why bother doing anything? Wait for it to break, or get unacceptably slow, then replace.

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:03 pm
by CyberBob
Apple has a list of Vintage and Obsolete products.

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201624

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:07 pm
by gtd98765
According to its Wikipedia article, Android 6 is no longer supported.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Android_Marshmallow
As of October 2020, 7.01% of Android devices use[3] this unsupported (for security updates) Android 6.0 (API 23)

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:41 pm
by yules
adamthesmythe wrote: Sat Nov 21, 2020 5:45 pm > she doesn’t use the phone much more than to text and call.

Why bother doing anything? Wait for it to break, or get unacceptably slow, then replace.
What I mean is that she uses it to text and call mainly, and a little other stuff. And I’m concerned that the little other stuff may get her into some issues, and then who knows, malware deletes her contacts and then she is stuck. That sort of thing.

Yules

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:44 pm
by yules
gtd98765 wrote: Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:07 pm According to its Wikipedia article, Android 6 is no longer supported.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Android_Marshmallow
As of October 2020, 7.01% of Android devices use[3] this unsupported (for security updates) Android 6.0 (API 23)
Exactly, and she’s behind a few versions because the next one isn’t supported either, according to Wikipedia: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Android_version_history

So I am trying to find a way to notify her of the need to upgrade.

Yules

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 7:40 pm
by yules
Actually, and I realize that I might be talking to myself at this point, I wonder if there is a site I can register devices that can track the highest OS that it is compatible with, so that it notifies my mom when she needs to get a new device because the software is no longer supported and the hardware can’t handle the next version. My mom tends to get hand me downs from various family members, so she probably shouldn’t use some of the devices as long as she does.

Re: How to track non-supported/obsolete tech devices?

Posted: Sat Nov 21, 2020 9:15 pm
by skierrex
I sync my contacts to my gmail account, so they are not tied to my phone.

When you see her, you can look at the Last Update in Software Update. If it's been a while, you can figure it's old.

Also, if she can't install a new app, it's too old.

If her pictures take up all her memory, it's old.

If you did find a service to tell you when your phone is old, it would start selling you a new phone every time a new one came out.