In a world that is changing so rapidly, we tend to think of a gadget as “old” after a year or so when something better comes along. It’s a rare occurrence when you see someone still using an HTC DROID Incredible (my first-ever smartphone) or a laptop from the Windows XP days, but it got me thinking about how many people out there still use old technology on a daily basis. While you could technically count a microwave (for which my parents still have the same one after 20 years), my focus is aimed at consumer electronics, like phones, laptops, TVs, speakers, etc.
Upgrade cycles vary greatly depending on what the product is. Smartphones arguably have the quickest upgrade cycle, with new phones coming out all the time, and while phone contracts keep users on a two-year cycle, it’s becoming more and more popular to upgrade a smartphone every year or even every few months, thanks to off-contract phone plans. Honestly, it’s to the point where people scratch their heads when they see someone still using an iPhone 3GS -- a piece of gadgetry that’s only four years old.
Larger items usually have a longer ownership life, though, and things like laptops, televisions, and game consoles can easily last a few years without seeming out of date or “old.” Heck, the Xbox 360 will be turning eight years old in November and it’s still chugging along nicely, with millions of gamers still using it on a daily basis.
But your Xbox 360 surely can’t be the oldest consumer electronics device that you use every day. Maybe you have an old turntable that you still use to play all of your vinyl records on? Perhaps you still use the same landline phone from the 90s?
For me, the oldest piece of technology that I still use on a daily basis is probably an RCA speaker system that I bought with my own cold-hard cash when I was in junior high about 10 years ago. It obviously served as the main portal for playing all my CDs and turning the volume up to 11 because I was a rebel and all. However, it now serves as the speaker system to my home theater, and it still works great to this day.
Then again, speakers are something that practically last forever, and some would say that they’re like fine wine: the longer they’re around, the better they sound. I actually used to have a set of old speakers from when my dad was a DJ back in the 70s, and used them as computer speakers for a while, but they were too big and clunky (as with any older speaker set), so I had to eventually be realistic and get a Logitech 2.1 system.
Take a look at the devices that you use every day (or mostly every day) and see what the oldest one is. I’m sure there will be a lot of answers that will surpass my 10 years with my speaker system, but we look forward to seeing what devices you keep around, either for its simplicity, or the fact that you just can’t seem to part with it.
Leave your answers in the comments below!