These old Apple devices are about to become obsolete


Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
This may soon be your best option for fixing your older, broken Apple products.

If your iPhone 3G breaks a month from now, prepare to be mostly out of luck.

Apple has released a list of devices that will stop receiving repair and parts service in Apple Stores on June 9.

The full list, via 9to5Mac, includes a few gadgets that we were frankly a little surprised were still receiving support. Devices like the 11 year-old Xserve RAID mass-storage device (the one that supported Small Form-factor Pluggables, if you’re curious) and the mid-2007 model iMac.

Apple considers devices that have been out of production for seven years “obsolete,” which means that they will neither fix them themselves nor will they send out parts. A middle ground of “vintage” exists for products discontinued between five and seven years ago. No hardware service exists for vintage items unless you bought them in California or Turkey. In those two places, AppleCare will still take your call, and you can get both parts and service for those last two years.

Here’s the full list of affected gadgets. First, the vintage ones:

    17-inch MacBook Pro (Mid 2009)
    iPhone 3G (including China)
    iPhone 3GS (including China)

And these are the completely obsolete devices:

    Airport Express Base Station
    20-inch iMac (Mid 2007)
    24-inch iMac (Mid 2007)
    15-inch MacBook Pro (2.4/2.2GHz processor)
    17-inch MacBook Pro (2.4GHz processor)
    XServe (Late 2006)
    XServe RAID (SFP, Late 2004)

If you own and still use something on these lists, it doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to get one it repaired if you take it someplace that knows its way around an Apple product. But if the fixer doesn’t have the parts they need, they won’t be able to get them.

And if the worst happens, and you end up with a broken and unrepairable thing, don’t worry — you can still get some use out of your outdated tech. Take a cue from these creative people, and make something awesome.

  • Leslie B

    Oh heavens no! I won’t be able to buy brand new OEM replacement parts for my older Apple products. How heartbreaking. I’m devastated–shocked–frightened!!!

    I’d better run out and buy brand new Apple stuff this very minute before something goes wrong.

    I really like my Apple stuff, but it really pi$$es me off the lengths Apple goes to squeeze money out of people. Like they don’t have enough billions already! Luckily I’m not one of those they can so easily fool. Aftermarket and used parts work just fine, assuming I ever need one. My iPad 4 is humming right along, thank you. My iPhone 5S is doing the same. As for my MacBooks, I intentionally bought the ones that could be upgraded before Apple locked those down. That means if the memory goes out or the hard drive needs replacing, I can just go out and buy another. With any luck, I won’t need to buy another Apple product for many years to come. Except maybe the watch. Even then I’m not going to rush out and buy a replacement when the next model is a millimeter thinner or has slightly better battery life. I’m no foolish fanboy.

    • David Edwards

      You know, I don’t have a problem with people who use older devices but it makes me mad when people think that because the newer Macs are ‘locked down’ they will instantly die quicker and become obsolete quicker. The memory and SSD in the current rev MacBooks will probably outlive the rest of the machine. The only reason to hold on to the older machines it’s for upgradeability, not repairability.

      The new MacBook Pros are just at repairable. Parts are even similarly priced from the used market for the 2012 15″ Retina and non-Retina Macs. The only difference is the PCIe connector the SSD uses is only found on Macs at this point and the RAM is soldered.

      Now, that’s fine that your using older devices like I said. Heck, one of my daily machines is a 2011 13″ Pro. With my mobile devices I like being on the cutting edge since I usually take advantage of the new features. This doesn’t mean my phone just goes back into the box, I give it to another family member who needs an upgrade from an older model so it’s not wasted. This also doesn’t mean I’m a blind fanboy either. Windows 10 is shaping up to be a great OS and I like vanilla Android. I choose to stick with iOS and OS X because it’s what I know. I choose to upgrade when I deem it a big enough upgrade. I have an iPad Air 2 and I do not see myself upgrading it for a few years. I use my iPhone daily though, so I can see upgrading it yearly and it’s worth it to me. You don’t have to go out and upgrade either, actually I still have a PowerMac G5 that still functions and a 2006 MacBook.

      Just my 2 cents.

      • NoSpam

        Soldered RAM is obviously not repairable, and if you’ve never had a memory module go bad then you either haven’t owned that many machines, or you’ve been luck.

        Even moreso with storage. SDD is still newish tech, and we don’t really know how well wear-leveling algorithms work and how long the SSDs Apple has been using will practically last before becoming error prone. It’s entirely possible that it will be long enough that by the time most owners need a repair, Apple’s proprietary connector will have already been abandoned.

        Apple not offering a user-upgradable/repairable MBP after the mid-2012 model (i.e. no Retina, ever, if you want to work on your own machine) is a real slap in the face of long time power users. Not that we should be surprised — witness the slow death of the desktop Mac. You want to tell my why the Trashcan Pro doesn’t have an upgradable GPU, other than greed?

  • Loren Sims

    Hey, I just bought my AirPort Express Base Station two months ago!!!
    Waddya mean “obsolete?”

    • FreeManinAmerica

      If you bought it from Apple, it’s the current, supported version.