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Google Offers Longest Update Support with Chromebooks

Google Chromebooks computers will get 10 years of updates automatically, the company announced this week.

This support applies to Chromebooks "released from 2021 onwards." Older machines will still have an "option to extend automatic updates to 10 years from the platform's release (after they receive their last automatic update)," the announcement added.

By "platform's release," Google appears to be referring to the Chrome OS that was released when the machine was sold by the device manufacturer. Details about the extended support option for older Chromebooks were not elucidated in the announcement.

Google laid claim to offering the longest operating system update support with this announcement. "All Chromebook platforms will get regular automatic updates for 10 years -- more than any other operating system commits to today," Google indicated.

Google's announcement notably contrasts with recent trends set by Microsoft, which has shortened its Windows operating support on devices from 10 years to as little as five years in some cases.

Google is also bucking a negative trend on the "right to repair" by "rolling out updates that help make repairs even faster." For instance, a USB key now isn't needed to repair Chromebooks. The announcement explained that "more than 80% of U.S. schools" repair Chromebooks in house.

In contrast, Microsoft permits self-repair for some Microsoft Surface devices, offering some replacement parts. All Microsoft Surface self-repair work gets done out of warranty, though, this Microsoft document emphasized.

Google also touted the use of post-consumer recycled materials in Chromebooks in partnership with device manufacturers Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP and Lenovo.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.

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