How many years of realistic operational life?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Retired Cat, Feb 12, 2014.

  1. Retired Cat macrumors 65816

    Jun 12, 2013
    How many years should an iPhone theoretically last? What are major points of failure?

    I had a flip phone for about 4 years prior to buying an iPhone 5. The flip phone began to have issues with its charging port, and the external LCD occasionally displayed weird bright lines. Also, the mute switch began to get fairly loose. Oddly, the LiPo battery seemed to hold its capacity well.

    I'll be happy if I can get my iPhone to last as long, but reading all the articles here may temp me to upgrade before then!
  2. Jamesesesesess macrumors 6502a

    Nov 26, 2011
    I know that many have been able to keep their iPhone for ~4 years because they took care of it and didn't care about having the latest software or features, but I personally wouldn't want to keep one for any longer than 2 years since there's a new one each year :p

    There's no reason you couldn't have it for 4 years if you kept it in a case or were just careful with it.
  3. easy-peasy macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2014
    Over time there are 2 things that will wear out :
    1) the battery (completely normal)
    2) the buttons (especially the power button on top)

    With Apple they offer service on their devices for 5 years, so if anything happens you can pay to have it repaired or a replacement battery.

    If someone were so inclined and kept their iPhone on its original firmware instead of upgrading I could see a person able to keep an iPhone 5s for 8 years or more (granted that they paid $80 for a replacement battery around year 4/5 and any button repairs needed).
  4. Bacong macrumors 68020


    Mar 7, 2009
    Westland, Michigan
  5. Robster3 macrumors 68000

    Dec 13, 2012
  6. Macman45 macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    I've never had one beyond the next generation....I get the best resale value that way, but I take good care of them, and I know my 4S is still going strong. I wouldn't want to be an OS out though.....:)
  7. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012

    He or she has an iPhone 5.


    OP: I know people using the iPhone 3GS which is 4 years old. Aside from lacking features/software they still work ok.
  8. Retired Cat thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jun 12, 2013
    Great, thanks everyone!

    Power/lock buttons seem to be a problem for smart phones in general. A friend of mine has an LG Android smart phone and it takes 2 or 3 presses to lock. Another person I know who bought an iPhone 5 on launch day told me this morning he has the exact same issue.
  9. Boyd01 macrumors 68040


    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    My iPhone 4 will be 4 years old in May, sometimes I have to push the home button twice, but that might be fixed with a cleaning. Other than that, it's still fine. Just upgraded to a 5s and am going to get the 4 unlocked to give to a friend in Europe. That same friend still has my iPhone 3g that is over 6 years old and uses it with another SIM when she travels to the US.

    If you treat it well, it should last until you want to upgrade and get the benefit of a newer model.
  10. IFRIT macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2012
    The average person would get 2 years out of most phones before things start failing i would think.

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