Wednesday, February 28

Germany Wants Seven Years of Updates and Parts for Smartphones

Europe is working on rules that oblige tablet and smartphone makers to provide (security) updates and spare parts for five years. But Germany wants more.


The new rules fit in with the stricter environmental regulations for the appliances. Today, most smartphones get about three years of security updates once they hit the market. But that means that whoever buys such a device a year after launch can continue with it for at most two years. So the devices are technically still in perfect order but are unsafe when the updates stop.

Currently, the plan is to provide updates and parts for smartphones for up to five years after launch and for tablets for up to six years, given that they typically last longer in use. But according to the German IT magazine Heise/CT, the German Ministry of Economy wants Europe to use seven years as a deadline.

Germany also wants to emphasize the delivery time and prices of those spare parts. In the European plan, this is five working days. But a spokesperson for the ministry says to Heise that this should be discussed because consumers will choose a new device more quickly if the waiting time increases.

According to Germany, the prices of those spare parts must also be reasonable and made public to avoid sneaky price increases.

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