Innovative as they may be, Macs don’t last forever. Though Apple has often been lauded for its powerful, long-lasting hardware performance, there comes a time to replace your device like any other.
Some experts optimistically estimate that the average Mac lifespan is 10 years. This accounts for the seven-year eligibility of Macs to receive the latest macOS version and Apple’s general three-year support for each. However, this estimate disregards any unforeseen hardware or software issues, or the activities one would use their device for (are they simply using it to browse the web, or doing more high-intensity tasks such as graphic design or video editing?).
To determine whether it’s time to upgrade your Mac, we’ve outlined a few telltale signs below.
Hardware age and problematic performance are some of the most glaring signs your device needs replacing. An outdated CPU will make it difficult to run demanding tasks, such as games, video editing software, or graphic design tools. Lacking or poor RAM capacity can prevent you from running multiple applications at once, dampening your work efficiency.
Your battery will also weaken with age, failing to retain its charge for longer periods of time. Some claim this reduces to a maximum of one hour. While keeping your Mac plugged in will still allow uninterrupted performance, your device loses its portability advantage.
Sluggish app performance
As time passes, apps tend to grow bigger in size, demanding more memory for performance.
Running these apps on an outdated Mac can thus lead to multiple performance issues, resulting in constant freezes, glitching, or general unresponsiveness. Some new apps (or app updates) may even be incompatible with your computer altogether.
While you can also choose to fall back on earlier versions of software, these may lead to critical security issues, poor performance, and antiquated features, which can negatively impact your business efficiency, productivity, and competitive edge.
Inability to run the latest OS
Apple releases a new version of their macOS every year, offering new features and greater security. While most models will be able to run this, some may be too old or outdated to efficiently do so. If your Mac proves incompatible with the latest OS, this is a sure sign it’s nearing obsoletion, and therefore needs replacing.
Apple’s site displays the list of models that are capable of running the latest macOS Catalina. If your Mac isn’t on the list, it’s probably time to get a new one.
Going hand-in-hand with hardware issues, there may be times when a specific internal component fails, rendering your device unusable until it’s repaired or replaced.
Small quirks or issues may not warrant a total replacement, and can easily be fixed without leaving a dent in your wallet. Taking specific components for repair may also be worth it when dealing with newer Mac models with a substantial remaining life span.
However, should a piece of hardware fail within an already outdated device, you may be better off replacing the entire device altogether. A Mac nearing its end is likely to have other components fail following one incident, leaving you to invest in further, unnecessary repairs when you can simply invest in a new device.
Lack of space
Finally, when your Mac constantly struggles with lack of free space, then it’s a sign to upgrade to a newer model.
While lack of space may temporarily be remedied through external drives or freeing up unused files on your device, your Mac will eventually warrant replacing if the problem persists.
Additionally, some programs may require a demanding amount of RAM to run efficiently — and it may be more worthwhile to upgrade your device altogether, rather than investing in more RAM for an already aging system.
Looking to upgrade your tech?
High-performing and up-to-date technology is essential for any successful business. Should your company need updating in any IT-related area (be it hardware, communication systems, or your general IT functions), our experts at Healthy IT are here to help. Get in touch with our team to find out how we can level up your tech today.