At the end of the year, Apple is set to transition a number of its old MacBook laptops – along with a model of the Mac mini – to obsolete (or vintage – more on that in a moment) status, meaning the company will no longer officially support the devices for repairs or stock spare parts (if it goes wrong, you’re on your own, in other words).
The models which will run out of road in terms of support on December 31 of this year are the MacBook Pro 15-inch (early 2011) and MacBook Pro 17-inch (early 2011), along with the MacBook 13-inch (mid-2009) and the Mac mini (early 2009).
Technically speaking, only the latter two are becoming obsolete globally – the former pair of MacBook Pro models are becoming ‘vintage’, which is the same as obsolete everywhere across the world except in California and Turkey, where ‘limited’ support is kept on for a further two years.
So in short, these MacBook Pro versions are obsolete for everyone except US citizens in California and those who live in Turkey, as the calendar flips from 2016 to next year.
- It may be time to make the switch to Surface Pro 4
Seven year hitch
Apple provides support for its hardware in terms of servicing and spare parts for five years following the cessation of manufacturing of the product – or seven years in the case of vintage products, as mentioned.
The original iPad, for example, is still a vintage product, so while it’s obsolete across most of the globe, those in Turkey and California can still get their slates serviced by Apple.
Hopefully, though, repairing won’t ever be required, although problems can always crop up with any complex piece of electronics – even with Apple’s newest machines, as we’ve seen this week.
We’re talking about the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, which is apparently suffering video glitches for some users, including some highly irritating flickering screen problems. Whatever is causing that, hopefully it’s a minor problem with a fix Apple can issue for a straightforward resolution, rather than a more deep-seated issue with the hardware.
- Find out what's new in macOS 10.12 Sierra