As reported here at ChromeReady, for the past few months, Google has been performing several significant overhauls of the Auto Update (End of Life date) for Chromebooks and Chrome devices. This includes extending the expiry date of over one hundred models. Now that their machines have a longer life span, Google is making it easier to find their device’s End of Life date easier by adding it to the Chrome OS Settings page.
XDA Developers recently announced that the update is now live on the Canary Channel. Chromebook users should expect the change in their system in the next two major updates of Chrome OS. To check it, Chrome OS users should navigate to the Settings menu via the System Tray, click About Chrome OS | Additional Details. Here users will see the End of Life Date for their device. If the user clicks Learn More, they’ll navigate to a support page that details the Final Software Update.
Every Chromebook has an expiration date that Google stops supporting the device. Google provides new hardware with 6.5 years of Auto-Update support. Note that the 6.5 years of Auto Update is contingent not on when you purchased your device, but upon the release of the first unit of a specific model.
When your Chromebook reaches Auto Update Expiration (AUE) date, you’ve presented a notification which states, “This device will no longer receive the latest software updates. Please consider upgrading.”
Despite this notification, you can continue using your Chromebook past its expiration date; you will no longer receive critical updates that include new features, bug fixes, and critical security patches. While, on the face of things, this might not seem like a big deal, it’s important to note that many older models are still being sold as new. Take, for example, the Samsung Chromebook 3. It’s still being sold as new. However, users will stop receiving Auto Updates in June 2022, just a little over two-and-a-half years from now.
While displaying the device’s End of Life date is just a minor change, it provides proof positive that Google’s commitment to delivering the top-notch support and polish needed to be a viable player in the desktop OS market. I also appreciate Google’s transparency here. I only wish other retailers and manufacturers would follow suit.
Google’s Auto-Update policy for Chromebooks and Chrome devices is available via their support site.