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Average HDTV Today Made to Last Only a Few Years

Service staff at a electronics discount retailer as well as a technician at a repair service told German website Golem.de that the average LCD TV from any major brand, including Toshiba, Sony, Samsung, or Philips, is built to last "just about three to four years" when used for about five hours per day. Some TVs may last longer, but it is a matter of luck to find such a TV.

The TV repair technician noted that today's "TVs are built in a way so that they break soon." However, those defective TVs do not go to repair services, they frequently are simply being replaced as parts are expensive. No customer ever requested a panel replacement for their TV, the repair technician said. Panels are usually more expensive than the entire TV, which, however, has apparently created a lucrative back market for some repair services.

Only "older people" would be interested in repairs today, the technician said: The share of defective TVs being sent to a repair service versus those that are simply thrown away is about 1 in 10, the employee estimated. He also added that it would be no problem to build TVs that last longer, but no manufacturer would be interested in making that effort and count on replacement sales instead.

  • frozonic
    I dont know why this surprises people, this is simple and dirty capitalism, every product is made tobe operational for a few years and good enough too use for an even shorter time
    Reply
  • phamhlam
    What makes the TV break? I would like to know. My desktop monitor last 6+ years. I would expect my TV to be able to do that.
    Reply
  • warezme
    So wouldn't that be illegal to know that certain parts are designed in a substandard way to fail? What parts are the ones built this way and who is building them? Seems like consumers would have the right to know go after these manufacturers.
    Reply
  • chumly
    Corporations: Destroying your planet with garbage and chemicals for the sake of profit since their inception.
    Reply
  • jankeke
    This is no news but it's important to make people aware of this.
    Reply
  • the_crippler
    warezmeSo wouldn't that be illegal to know that certain parts are designed in a substandard way to fail? What parts are the ones built this way and who is building them? Seems like consumers would have the right to know go after these manufacturers.

    I'm betting it falls on the side of using a part that they have instead of spending time and money to develop a longer-lasting one rather than saying they are intentionally using sub-par parts. At least that's the way they'd probably swing it to avoid trouble.

    Also, minor fault in the article - Philips doesn't make TVs any more. (Interestingly, the only big-screen flat panel I've bought is a Philips, and it has lasted longer than I expected it to.)
    Reply
  • Intel_Hydralisk
    Another problem is that the "next best thing" is out within 3-4 years anyway, so people are more tempted to simply buy a new TV.
    Reply
  • royale606
    Yep. The 'seemingly best' method is making ones that break right after the warranty is up. However if my new LG lasts for less than 5 years I'll never buy LG again. The companies should take loyalty into consideration. It's that loyalty that can assure Honda that I'll be buying my third Honda next time I need a car. And that's specifically because they run significantly longer than other cars.
    Reply
  • aoneone
    I am waiting for that day where electronics such as laptops and/or ipads will have an internal countdown timer that 'expires' in such a way that you will have to replace it with a new one or even worse, pay money to extend the timer to make it work again... such a sad world we live in.
    Reply
  • nbraybrook
    So ture, they do it in other markets to. My dad works at a place that tests automotive parts for all the major manufacturers. Typical parts are designed to last no longer than 8-10 years. If parts far exceed the stress tests they are put thought, they will actually make the part cheaper to fall closer to the 8-10 year life span...
    Reply