24. January 2022

Turning off: The devices that could follow BlackBerry’s fate


This week, BlackBerry ended assist for its traditional telephones, which means most of the cult keyboard-toting devices have been rendered all-but inoperable. That contains 2014’s BlackBerry Classic and BlackBerry Passport, which at solely seven years previous could seem too younger for such a fate. But really, seven years is about so long as you’ll be able to count on for a gadget that depends on net providers. If you’re questioning what’s subsequent on the chopping block, listed below are some devices more likely to see their sundown quickly.


At the identical time that the Blackberry Classic and Passport have been launched, Apple was introducing the iPhone 6, which is itself susceptible to being fully left behind. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are unable to be upgraded past 2018’s iOS 12 software program, regardless of the present iPhones utilizing iOS 15.

The iPhone 6s is next in line to fall out of Apple’s stable of supported phones.

The iPhone 6s is subsequent in line to fall out of Apple’s secure of supported telephones.Credit:Bloomberg

This means many new options and apps don’t work, Apple doesn’t formally assist the devices, and their safety and compatibility with providers will proceed to degrade over time. With iOS 16 coming this yr, it’s attainable the iPhone 6S or iPhone 7 could additionally slip off the supported record.

Android telephones are typically deserted a lot faster, with assist for Google’s 2018 Pixel 3 ending this yr. Samsung additionally solely updates its telephones for 4 years, which means the Galaxy S9 is perhaps put out to pasture in 2022.

Of course, the Apple and Android infrastructure nonetheless exist, so these telephones will proceed to make calls and entry the web. The BlackBerry state of affairs is exclusive within the sense that ending assist means being locked out from the web and cell networks fully.

But for older telephones that use 3G connections for calls and SMS, oblivion isn’t too distant. Telstra and Vodafone shut down a part of their 3G networks in 2019, with Optus to follow in April this yr. This impacts devices utilizing the 2100Mhz spectrum, together with the unique iPad and quite a lot of previous Nokias and Samsungs. In the approaching years the remaining 3G will disappear (2024 for Telstra, TBA for the others), which is able to render devices together with the iPhone 5 pretty ineffective.

Samsung’s Galaxy S9 is two Android systems behind and will probably lose support entirely this year, but will still be able to make phone calls.

Samsung’s Galaxy S9 is 2 Android techniques behind and can most likely lose assist fully this yr, however will nonetheless have the ability to make cellphone calls.

Game consoles

While comparatively historic techniques just like the Super Nintendo nonetheless work wonderful at present, extra trendy consoles depend on on-line performance and could be considerably hobbled when assist for these providers is ended. However, these are typically supported for a bit longer than telephones.

Sony initially deliberate to start out closing on-line providers for its PlayStation 3, a 15-year-old machine, final yr till a web-based outcry staid its hand. Microsoft has not introduced closures for the equally aged Xbox 360 in any respect, which means each these machines can nonetheless obtain and replace video games, and join with your folks.

The PS3 is still kicking, for now, but many of its online games are not.

The PS3 remains to be kicking, for now, however lots of its on-line video games are usually not.

However, only a few precise video games make it to 10 years with their providers intact; many on-line video games for these techniques will not work. Microsoft’s personal Halo video games have been an exception on Xbox 360, however these are on account of shut down this month. While the likes of Halo will proceed to be supported via remakes on newer techniques, the actual victims of those shutdowns shall be extra obscure video games that are rendered fully unpurchaseable or unable to be performed as servers shut.

Nintendo is at the moment dismantling cost providers globally for its decade-old 3DS and Wii U techniques, so a full shutdown of on-line providers can’t be distant.

Computers and good devices

This is the yr that Microsoft will lastly put its foot down and fully finish assist for its traditional Internet Explorer, so it’s gone time to modify to a brand new browser for those who’re nonetheless utilizing it. The firm has been attempting to push customers over to its new Edge browser for years, and has confronted some resistance, however says it is going to be throughout for Explorer by June.

This is the final yr of prolonged assist for Windows 8.1 as nicely, so any PC unable to improve to Windows 10 shall be left unsupported and weak. Over on the Mac facet, Apple helps new variations of MacOS for 3 years, which means assist for 10.15 Catalina will finish this yr. Macs from earlier than 2013 can’t improve previous Catalina, so shall be left behind.


Wearable devices may not seem to be one thing that must be heading for the sundown, as you may solely use them to rely steps or measure your coronary heart charge, however they do finally lose assist and should cease working as you improve your cellphone. Fitbit has already minimize off its 2016 and older devices, so that you’d count on to see the 2017 Flex 2, Alta HR and Ionic go subsequent. The Apple Watch Series 3 is at the moment supported however will doubtless be dropped this yr or subsequent. And for those who’re utilizing a much less widespread model, there’s all the time the prospect it could go the best way of the BlackBerry if the corporate is acquired, goes out of enterprise or adjustments focus, as occurred with the cult Pebble watch.

And lastly the loss of life of 3G shall be felt within the good devices area, too, as many low-powered and passively related “internet of things” merchandise use the community for connectivity, and there are many unsure gray areas. For instance, mobile Apple Watches as much as Series 5 assist some 4G bands however not the most typical ones utilized by Australian telcos, so could be closely impacted when 3G goes away.

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