Using Older Products

5th January 2022

I’ve had enough thoughts on this idea to span a short book, but I had a moment today where I was just occupied with my thoughts, and I started contemplating using an iPhone 5 again.

A quick bit of a context: the iPhone 5 is my favourite phone to have existed, and I’m also a fan (nostalgically) of older technology.

Whenever I think about an older product like the iPhone 5, or whatever old product or service that I used in the past, I always end up watching YouTube videos like “Does X work in 2022?”.

After going through a moment of nostalgia, I’m always left with the thought that “of course it should work”. Older products don’t magically stop working when newer versions come out. In the same way that if you buy a Game Boy Colour now, and Pokémon Yellow, you’ll have the same experience as you would have done 20 years ago.

Surely as long as the hardware of a product remains functional, and any software updates keep the product working as expected, then technology should theoretically last forever?

When the question whether an older product or technology is still viable in a certain moment, if the need/purpose is still the same, then it is as suitable and capable as it was originally.

Of course, there are more specific arguments that could be made against this. For example, if you have an old iPhone and update it to the most modern version of iOS, while you may have newer features, your device is most likely going to run slower.

There’s a potential argument here that keeping software updates isn’t always the best way to keep something working for a long period of time. But I’ll save that thought for another day.

All I’m trying to say, is that when you think about older products, their capabilities aren’t usually what has changed. They can most likely perform the same function as they did originally. But what has changed is your expectations of what a certain product should provide.

My answer to every “Can you still use X in 2022?” question, is that if your needs have not changed and there aren’t any software compatibility issues, then of course you can.

Tags Technology Essay

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