Why you should not buy older smartphones or laptops

As much as possible, do not buy older smartphones and laptops. It may be a very tempting proposition to pick up those older models at great bargain prices. But it isn’t always a good idea. We explain it all below.

Why you should not buy older smartphones

Danladi went shopping for a new smartphone, but was constrained by cost. He found what looked like a great bargain. A 2015 model smartphone running Android 4 Kitkat. It had the right screen size he wanted and a good battery. However, after buying it, he soon began to experience issues with it.

His brand new smartphone could not play certain videos that he downloaded, and some apps lacked advanced functionality that he had enjoyed elsewhere. For example, the email app didn’t have a few features he had used on the web version of his email service.

What could be the problem with his new smartphone? Age. The current crop of smartphones ship with much newer software like Android 6 or Android 7. Those newer software have more advanced, more current functionality, and up-to-date compatibility built into them. His Android 4 smartphone looked good and all, but it would keep running into issues with newer services and functionality.

Danladi would have been better off buying a smartphone running newer software, even though he would have to trade some things to be able to get one at the same price. But a smartphone running Android 4 Kitkat in 2017 is a dinosaur. Stay away from them.

do not buy older smartphones

Why you should not buy older laptops

Remember the issue we faced with the Camon CX wireless hotspot not seen by our Windows 7 laptop? We have tested the wireless hotspot feature on the Camon CX more extensively and it works without issues with a number of Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10 laptops. What was the problem with this particular laptop it wasn’t working with?

Age. The affected laptop not only runs Windows 7, which is old…, but the laptop itself is an older, more basic model as well. To be honest, we should get rid of it. It is a dinosaur. If we do not replace it, we shall continue to experience more incompatibility issues with it.

No Dinosaurs

In today’s fast-paced world of technology, it is always good practice to get the most up-to-date hardware and software that your budget can afford. As much as possible, avoid much older models. You do not want to spend on a laptop or smartphone and not be able to get one or two basic things done. Unless you really have no choice, do not buy older smartphones and laptops. To save yourself the agony of incompatibility issues from age, you may opt to buy used versions of more up-to-date devices in the market.

The Exception

For every generic rule, there are exceptions. If you have to go for an older model, opt for a flagship that is less than two years in the market.

Such flagships tend to continue to get software updates and support for up to two yeras, and so are generally up-to-date. They are also usually now available at bargain prices. See our insightful article, Appreciating the value of the ageing flagship.

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5 comments

  1. This one i substantially disagree with. Older flagships are generally better purchase options than newer mid range or low end devices. I don’t know what app functionality is there on Android 7.0 devices that i can’t enjoy on an updated app on a kitkat-Lollipop device, really.

    Unless the device had hardware or software issues from the beginning I wonder what the fuss is

    1. Devices with an older OS version would be incapable of running cutting edge apps because the old version may simply not. provide the facilities needed for the newer apps to do their work.

      Take TEzpand on Android. This app works only with marshMallow or later, so it’s a pipe dream to use that app with any older Android Version…

  2. Generally good advice.. but there is another side to this story.

    There are times when the newer Operating system actually causes problems.

    For example, there is Androsearch, a fantastic device search app that doesn’t work anymore on MarshMallow devices ( and above.?). Simply put there is no other search slop as capable as it is on Android.

    In the new Android version Nougat, it is no longer permitted for apps to draw over systems elements, so out goes apps that dim the screen, for example (like F. Lux)..

    EXposed FrameWork does not work with Android Nougat (yet), and may never do… so out goes those insanely useful functionality associated with eXposed Modules.

    Rooting a phone on android is getting more complicated and devices running the latest OSes like android ‘O’ would be a bitch to handle. Out goes all those numerous apps that need root access to perform their magic.

    Android Marshmallow (and above) has proximity sensor issues with a number of devices. a real annoyance.

    So, newer is not necessarily always better, and is often fraught with headaches

    Additionally, customs ROMs exist for Android devjcea. Before you buy a device that runs an older version of your OS, simply ensure there are custom ROMs available for it. That way, upgrading it it to bleeding edge OS would be a ten-minute job.

    For. instance, my aging InfiniX Note 2 (x600) can be upgraded to Android Nougat right now, despite being fairly old, so no problems there….

    I do not give a hoot about iOS devices….

  3. You can buy old devices as long as they are popular and flash custom roms like cyanogenmod or lineageos on them. For example the galaxy s5 has had custom roms of Nougat available since last year. Also for pc’s you can always get the latest OS available or move over to Linux.

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