Did you know that Apple keeps a list of vintage and obsolete products that is updated annually? This means there are factors that would make your iPhone obsolete and thus cannot receive hardware support from Apple.
Vintage or obsolete iPhones are those models whose support has been discontinued by the device maker, Apple, in all regions, and without any exceptions.
What this means is that neither service providers nor repair shops can order repair parts for such models.
Is your iPhone Obsolete?
If you’d like to know for sure, you can always visit Apple’s list of vintage and obsolete products to check your model. This list is constantly updated once a year sometime around September and October, when the newest iPhone model is unveiled.
Apple also has rules pertaining to the classification of products as vintage or obsolete. Vintage devices, according to Apple, are iPhones discontinued between 5-7 years back, while obsolete applies to iPhone devices discontinued more than 7 years ago.
The word “discontinued” means that the model is no longer manufactured nor sold by Apple. A good example is the iPhone 5, which was discontinued in September 2013, and by October 2018, it had received the “vintage” label.
If you have an iPhone 4, Apple classifies it as obsolete, although the model was discontinued in 2013, which means it doesn’t always strictly follow the guidelines from its list for obsolete models. It may also at its discretion push the obsolete label or status on specific phones earlier than its time.
For an iPhone that’s obsolete and broken, you won’t get support from Apple, sadly, and there aren’t any licensed repair services sourcing new parts from Apple. This means you can’t get parts like charging port replacements, new battery, Home buttons, camera lens, and more.
However, you can still get the phone fixed if you look for the parts yourself, and get a repair shop to fix it for you, though the part may be available but sub-par and eventually malfunction.
That said, you need to upgrade your iPhone before it’s obsolete or vintage, because in software terms, it can also be obsolete. For instance, the iPhone 5 was incompatible when ios 11 was released and couldn’t be updated to the latest version, meaning it missed out on key software updates.
As a rule of thumb, you may want to replace your iPhone after every fourth birthday, or if you like, you can always get the latest model as Apple churns them out.
Elsier is an avid tech writer, who loves mobile apps, games, music, and cars. When she’s not catching up on the latest in tech, she’s binging on reruns of her favorite series.