Last updated: February 28, 2020
When I buy eggs at the market, I always check two things. Are any of the eggs damaged, and when do they expire? It may take me a week to eat a dozen eggs. If the eggs expire tomorrow, then I won’t buy them. Buying a Chromebook, which is a laptop that runs the Chrome OS operating system, is like buying eggs. The buyer should check for obvious signs of damage and that the device is in working order. But it is equally as important for a buyer to check the support lifespan of the Chromebook too. Yes, Chromebooks have built-in end-of-life dates, which is the date after which it will no longer receive software and security updates.
When will a Chromebook expire, and how do you check? Every Chromebook has an end-of-life date. When buying a new Chromebook, check for a label on the outside of the box that indicates the end date for automatic software updates. The outside of my Chromebook box tells me the device will receive automatic software updates until June 2021.
If you buy a used Chromebook, check to make sure it has plenty of lifespan left or that it has not already expired. If expired, chances are pretty good you do not want it. Easily check your Chromebook’s Update Schedule from Settings. Click or tap About Chrome OS in the left navigation. In the About Chrome OS window, click or tap Additional Details.
In the Additional Details window, see how long the device will receive automatic software and security updates in the Update schedule section. To navigate directly to the Additional Details window, copy/paste the following link into Chrome:
According to my Chromebook, I am good to receive automatic software and security updates until June 2022. Even though the original box says I will receive updates until June 2021, Google changed its automatic update policy in January to extend the end-of-life date for certain Chromebooks. As a result, my particular Chromebook received an extra year of support updates from what was originally scheduled.
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Henry Irvine, Contributing Technology Writer, translates more than a decade of internet technology experience in product and customer relationship management into practical help and how-to content. Look for him on Bay Area trails, music venues, or sausage shacks when he’s not writing. Don’t call him Hank if you see him. Seriously. Hank on Twitter