How old is too old?

I am not a fan of throwing out old technology, just ask my wife… but in recent years with the release of Windows 8 and Windows 10, and the increase in popularity of tablets, I am often asked by my clients should I persist with my old computer or should I upgrade?

Over the last few years, what used to be considered repairable is now often more expensive to do then replacing the entire computer. It is sad to say but is often true. These days everyone I meet has at least one computer, a tablet and usually a smart phone. They may not understand the ins and outs of each device but they find a happy balance between them, and usually they spend more time on their tablet or iPad than sitting at the computer.

There are a lot of factors to consider when updating your computer, especially because of the sheer range of computers you have to choose from. So here are a few tips which may help.

My rule of thumb is, if your computer was born in the last decade and is running Windows Vista or Windows XP then in most cases it won’t be compatible with Windows 10 as the hardware is too slow to keep pace with this operating system. Don’t get me wrong, I still have customers who have computers that are 10 years old and running on XP and are going strong, but the web browsers they use are no longer supported and they have difficulty accessing compatible websites. So if you are having hardware problems with a computer like this it’s time to bite the bullet and go to your local computer store and talk to them about upgrading, because spending money on a technician to keep the computer going is like putting a band aid on a broken leg.

We are living in a world where technology is moving pretty fast, and whether we like it or not we all have to move with it, eventually everyone will need to move onto Windows 10, if not this year or next then in 3-4years time. It is inevitable, because Microsoft will continue to release newer operating systems and stop supporting the older ones.

Other things to consider are, if you have a computer that you bought in this decade and it is running Windows 7, if you paid $700 or more for it, then it is worth having a technician come out, maybe even upgrade the hard drive and the RAM, as these are cost effective hardware upgrades that keep your computer relevant and it may extend it’s life for a few more years.

If you upgrade, be aware you really get what you pay for. I have had people buy computers for less than $500 and they haven’t even lasted 18 months. I would suggest putting aside at least $900 for a computer, and get the 3-year replacement warranty so you are covered if any hardware fails.
Here are some specifications to look out for when you are shopping;
1. 4GB Ram or more
2. 500bg Hard drive or more
3. Fast CPU
4. Wifi if you need it.

I would look for your local computer store, as opposed to the big chains as the prices are pretty much the same and you are supporting small business and they may give you a great deal on transferring your files from your old computer.

Also, consider whether to change to a tablet, it may be more convenient and a little cheaper then replacing your computer. If you are unsure it is always best to give your local technician a call to ask for advice. If you don’t have a tech to ask you can always call or email me for advice, I am happy to help.

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