If you’ve been using one of the first Chromebook Pixel laptops from Google, it’s about time to upgrade that machine. Google has notified owners of the original Chromebook Pixel of 2013 that it is ‘no longer supported.’
In fact, Google is literally suggesting to ‘consider upgrading’ in message appearing where other alerts normally show up, according to Droid Life (opens in new tab). It notes that these particular devices ‘will no longer receive the latest software updates.’
Reported by Droid Life (opens in new tab), the message has appeared on users’ devices where other alerts normally appear and quite literally suggests that the user ‘consider upgrading’ because the device ‘will no longer receive the latest software updates.’
This process is known as ‘End of Life,’ (EOL) and Google lists every Chromebook and their expected EOL on its Auto Update Policy website (opens in new tab). EOL is a common practice that keeps companies from having to ensure their software supports every device currently running it beyond what would be reasonable to maintain, hence the usual five-year timer.
EOL is generally associated with the end of software updates that introduce new features as well as updates that keep the device up-to-date with security.
We’ve most recently seen this process occur with Microsoft’s EOL process for Windows 8 beginning slowly, with support for apps dropping soon.
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But… but… my Chromebook works just fine
The problem that Google might run into with Chromebooks reaching EOL after five years is that, unlike other devices that end up growing sluggish by that five-year mark anyway, Chromebooks tend to perform close to as well as they did on their first day.
Because of that, people might not be so inclined to upgrade their machine just because a prompt suggested they do.
It’s definitely a better problem to have than most, but one that could lead to some disgruntled folks for lack of understanding Google’s predicament. We can’t expect Google to maintain software that works on every Chromebook made in perpetuity, after all, but does the average user understand that?
We’ll see how the public reacts to more legacy Chromebook laptops reaching EOL and producing these messages politely nudging users to upgrade otherwise perfectly fine devices. For the sake of their security, they should get a new Chromebook whether they like it or not.
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