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How long should you keep a tablet and how long does it last?. Whether you own an iPad, an Android tablet, a Windows tablet (e.g., Microsoft Surface), or a Fire HD, you should know the lifespan of your tablet.
How long a tablet will last with heavy use? According to tablet experts, a well-maintained tablet will last on average between 4 and 5 years without any issues (average lifespan). Your daily tasks will affect the life expectancy of your tablet.
But how do you know when you need a new iPad or Android tablet?
Indeed, not all tablets freeze out of the blue. Some devices can not keep up with software and OS updates. For this reason, we will explore all the factors that can affect the life of your tablet.
From battery and price to expandability and usage (light, moderate, intensive) – nothing will be left out of our test. Let us take a closer look at how long tablets last.
- Tablet Lifespan: How Long Do Tablets Last? (iPad, Android, Windows)
- How long does a iPad last? (in years)
- What is the longest lasting Tablet brand? (Average Tablets lifespan by brand)
- When should you Upgrade & Replace your Tablet?
- Tablet Battery Lifespan
- iOS vs Android: Which tablet type lasts longer?
- How long does a 2-in-1 tablet last?
Tablet Lifespan: How Long Do Tablets Last? (iPad, Android, Windows)
Although most manufacturers claim that their tablets can last up to 7 years, we have found that most tablets last around 4-5 years.
Of course, brand has everything to do with the lifespan of a tablet. A high-end iPad Pro, for example, will likely last longer than most cheap tablets out there.
On the same account, price also affects the hardware features of a device. A high-quality Windows or iPadOS tablet will have exceptional memory(RAM), a good CPU, and a large SSD storage.
Powerful hardware will not become obsolete for at least 4 or 5 years. This is the reason why expensive tablets usually last longer than cheap ones.
The battery is also an important parameter. Most tablets have smaller screens than laptops. That’s why some models (e.g. iPad Pro, Samsung Galaxy Tab S6) have a battery life of 14 hours or more.
We have found that tablet batteries typically last between 2 and 3 years. After that, their lifespan shortens drastically or they stop working. If you are a heavy user, you can expect your tablet to have a slightly shorter lifespan.
Even if you take care of your device, demanding games or apps like Photoshop can affect a tablet’s lifespan in the long run.
What is the average lifespan of a Tablet?
To find out how long tablets last we can categorize tablets by price. Logically, more expensive tablets like iPads, Windows and Android tablets have a longer lifespan. If you are looking to replace a tablet, the average lifespan of the device you are buying is key.
The better the hardware specs of your new tablet, the longer it will last. So in terms of pricing, you can expect:
- Entry-level tablets ($300 or less) to last anywhere between 2 and 4 years
- Mid-range tablets ($300-$600) to last anywhere between 3 and 5 years
- High-end tablets ($600 or more) to last anywhere between 4 and 6 years
Aside from the hardware of a tablet, you should always be aware of the autonomy, quality, and expected battery life. Finally, the manufacturer and the material used also play an important role in the life of a tablet.
Therefore, an iPad Pro made of high-quality metals is more durable and therefore lasts longer than most cheap tablets.
Also see our post on the comparison between the Amazon Fire HD vs Samsung Tablet models.
How long does a iPad last? (in years)
Do iPads get old? It’s a fair question, considering the brand’s reputation. However, just like any other electronic device, iPads do not last forever. In fact, a well-maintained iPad lasts slightly fewer years than Apple fans claim.
I cover this in complete detail in our post: Exactly How Long Does an iPad Last?
To be precise, we have found that iPad Pros and iPad Airs last an average of 4.6 years. While Apple’s batteries are of high quality, you may need to replace them before the 4 years are up. You should also expect an iPad or iPad Mini to last between 4 and 5 years.
This has everything to do with the (less powerful) hardware. Do not forget that if you are a demanding user and run CPU -intensive apps (e.g. AutoCAD), your device’s lifespan will likely shorten (4-5 years for Pros and Airs).
In short, iPads are among the most reliable and durable tablets on the market. Only high-end tablets like the current Surface Pro 8 can match Apple tablets in terms of expected lifespan.
See our post on Procreate iPad: 7 Best iPads for Procreate if you’re using it for drawing apps, this is because when you use CPU intensive apps the ipad battery may drain quicker and ultimately – last slightly less than just web browsing or basic tasks.
Is 6 hours battery life enough for a Tablet
Battery autonomy depends entirely on your personal needs and preferences. Therefore, for some people, 6 hours of battery life is more than enough. But if you travel a lot for work, for example, you may need a higher autonomy.
In general, top-end tablets like the iPad Pro or Surface Pro 8 have better battery life than cheap tablets. The iPad Pro, for example, has a battery life of up to 10 hours. Of course, there are also cheap tablets like the Amazon Fire HD 10 (up to 10 hours) that also have exceptional batteries
If you are a casual user, we can safely say that 6 hours is more than enough for your daily needs. Keep in mind that in most cases, the actual battery life is a few hours shorter than the brand claims.
Can a Tablet last 10 years?
Although tablets have a relatively shorter lifespan than laptops, this is not always the case. Especially for high-end tablets that cost $500 or more, you can expect your device to last more than 5 years. Of course, if a tablet is well cared, it can last up to 10 years.
See our post on: How long do laptops last (and should I upgrade?)
The battery will probably die sooner, but that’s reasonable and you can easily replace it. The only problem with tablets is that they rarely stay relevant for more than 5 or 6 years. To be precise, tablets do not offer the upgradeability of desktops or laptops. So in most cases, you’ll have to stick with the original hardware setup.
If you buy an entry-level or mid-range tablet, it will probably become outdated a few years later. On the other hand, tablets like the Microsoft Surface Pro or iPad Pro are more likely to still be functional and relevant 10 years later.
Can a tablet last for 20 years?
Well, it is extremely rare for an electronic device to last 20 years. Even the best desktops that are fully-upgradable, won’t stay relevant easily for more than 10 years. So, even though a well-treated tablet may work 20 years after you purchase it, it will definitely be outdated.
This will probably affect its performance, even in light tasks like web browsing or streaming a movie. Think about it. How would a device that was bought back in the 00s perform today? Probably not very well.
In any case, if you are looking for a tablet that will have a chance to last more than 10 years, you should probably opt for a high-end tablet like the iPad Pro.
Can you game on a tablet or iPad?
To answer this question briefly, yes. There are endless possibilities when it comes to mobile games you can play with a tablet.
Android tablets have an extensive collection of free and premium games that you can download from the Play Store. Accordingly, Apple has the App Store and Windows tablets have the Microsoft Store.
Of course, tablets can’t cope with demanding PC games such as PUBG. No matter which tablet you choose, you need to stick to mobile gaming. When it comes to the gaming experience, CPU and RAM play the most important role.
See the 7 Best Adjustable iPad Stands [iPad holders] if you’re gaming on an iPad – you may need to put it down while still looking at it upright to monitor your game.
That’s why premium tablets like the iPads (M1 chip) and Surface Pro (Intel i5) can easily handle the most advanced mobile games (e.g. PUBG mobile). On the other hand, entry-level devices like the Fire HDs are designed for lighter tasks like browsing the web or watching videos. Such devices are not capable of handling mobile games with demanding rendering and graphics.
How to make your Tablet last longer
The lifespan of your tablet is directly linked to your usage and how well you treat it. For example, if you are a moderate user and only use your tablet for web browsing or word processing, you should expect it to last a bit longer.
But, what does a well-treated tablet actually mean? Let’s have a look at the things you can do to extend your tablet’s lifespan:
- Take care of the battery:Try to take the charging cable out every time your tablet is fully-charged.
- Keep food and liquids away: Food and liquids can damage the display and hardware of your tablet.
- Use trustworthy antivirus and cleaning software
- Monitor your tablet’s temperature: You can use a cooling pad and install a monitor software like the HWMonitor.
- Clean your tablet frequently: Take your tablet to an expert for cleaning (once per year).
What is the longest lasting Tablet brand? (Average Tablets lifespan by brand)
How long do iPads last
Apple is widely-known for its reliable and powerful iPads. Although not all models last exactly the same, we can safely say that an iPad will last longer than 4 years. Of course, you should expect the battery to stop working (or its performance to decrease) a bit earlier than that.
Moreover, the iPad Pro and iPad Air have more chances to last longer than the iPad Minis and the iPad. Since Apple’s flagships have bigger screens and better hardware, they will stay relevant for at least one or two more years. Also, Apple includes bigger batteries to the Air and Pro models.
How long do Samsung Tablets last
Samsung has been around since 1938. For more than 70 years, the brand has been producing top-notch electronic devices. Well, Samsung’s tablets aren’t an exception. All the devices we have reviewed are very reliable and should last longer than 4 years.
Just like Apple tablets, the high-end Samsung tablets (e.g. Samsung Galaxy Tab S8) have more advanced hardware and battery tech than the brand’s entry level devices (e.g. Tab A8).
This is why you should expect from the best Samsung tablets to stay relevant for at least one more year.
How long do Android based Tablets last?
There are many android based tablets like MARVUE and CHUWI that design affordable, yet powerful, Android tablets. Although those devices have a shorter lifespan than Samsung Android tablets, they can definitely last anywhere between 2-3 years.
So, if you are looking for a cheap Android tablet, rest assured that any device (provided it’s well-treated) can last at least a few years.
Note that you can also use a stylus on Android.
Finally, if you need a mid-range solution that can last longer than entry-level tablets, you should opt for a device like the latest Lenovo Tab M10. In fact, Lenovo devices are very affordable (considering their hardware kit) and equally reliable.
How long does a Fire HD tablet last?
Amazon has recently introduced a very successful tablet series called Fire HDs. As some of the most affordable tablets on the market, Fire HDs are an amazing solution for casual users and kids. We can safely say that Amazon has used premium materials and included great batteries.
thinking about a fire tablet? See our post on which is the best Amazon Fire tablet model? HD 8 vs 10.
This is why the Amazon Fire HDs last around 3 and 5 years (estimate). Keep in mind that the Fire HDs integrate Amazon’s OS (FireOS). This means you can’t access some apps and games from the (Android) Play Store. However, if you need a tablet that is very cheap and has an extended lifespan, Fire HD 10 (or HD 8) is the best way to go.
When should you Upgrade & Replace your Tablet?
If you are looking to upgrade or replace your tablet, you are probably unhappy with its performance. After a few years, a device may stop working or simply slow down. And that’s reasonable. With all the OS and software updates, tablets, laptops, and desktops become outdated.
But how can you decide if you should upgrade or replace your tablet? Well, for starters, most tablets simply can not be upgraded. The only feature that can be easily upgraded on almost all tablets on the market is the storage. So if you do not have enough storage for your files, you should go for a new hard drive or a SD card.
On the other hand, if your tablet freezes or can not keep up with the latest updates, it’s probably due to its outdated hardware (CPU and RAM). If that’s the case, replacing it with a new device is probably the best solution.
Remember that your tablet’s CPU cannot be changed. So even if you update the RAM (which is also rare), the chipset will still be outdated.
An alternative tablet for drawing is also called a drawing tablet, see how these work. They work differently than traditional tablets.
How long should you keep a Tablet?
To answer this question briefly, it depends. In fact, you should keep your tablet as long as it meets your daily needs. For example, if your device can no longer handle the apps you use, you should probably replace it. Even if that’s two years after you bought it.
So if your tablet no longer meets your personal or professional needs, you should probably replace or upgrade it.
This is one parameter you can consider when buying a new device. To be specific, you should go for a tablet that will (probably) cover your needs for more than 3 years. You could opt for a more expensive device, but your choice will save you money in the long run.
Tablet Battery Lifespan
How long does a tablet battery last? The average tablet battery lifespan depends on the type of technology it uses as well as the level of quality it has.
But, how long does an average tablet battery life last exactly? Well, a well-cared 2-cell tablet battery can last between 2 and 3 years.
Of course, this also depends on your usage, brand of tablet (like an iPhone, Samsung, etc) and what those devices have regarding features. More features may require more battery depending on what it is. For example, a large android tablet may require a larger battery to maintain a 8 hour session, but the length of the overall lifespan shouldn’t vary too significantly.
If you are using your tablets many hours a day, you should expect for the battery to stop working slightly earlier. Laptop batteries work similarly, but they also have a keyboard and a larger display in most situations.
For example the macbook pro battery lasts longer than a lot of tablets I’ve used. However, it’s also a more expensive device.
On the flip side, if you are a moderate user (e.g. 2 hours a day) and only use your tablet for easy tasks like web browsing, the battery will probably have an extended lifespan. Finally, the brand of your tablets also plays an important role in the battery lifespan.
For example, high-end tablets like the iPad Pro or the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 have chipsets with advanced energy-managing technologies that extend the battery lifespan.
What’s the average battery cycle use per year for Tablets
Considering that tablet batteries last 6 hours on average, most people charge their devices at least once per day. This sets the average battery cycle use per year at around 350-400.
Still, there are occasions where you need to charge a device two or even three times per day.
A good tablet battery can easily last for 500 charge cycles without any decrease in performance. And, when it comes to the tablet battery lifespan in total, a high-quality battery will provide at least 1,000 cycles.
How long should a Tablet battery last per session?
In our opinion, the ideal length of a continuous session is around 9 hours. Of course, you should keep in mind that most tablets last less hours than what’s claimed out of the box.
For example, even if Apple argues that the iPad Pro can easily last 12 hours, our testing proved that 10 hours is a more realistic session length.
In any case, the ideal battery autonomy comes down to your personal needs and preferences. For example, if you’re using a tablet for comics, then you likely want a long battery lifespan as you may read often.
If you travel a lot, you should go for a tablet with an exceptional battery (9 hours or more) like the iPad Air or Pro. On the flip side, if you use your tablet mainly at home, a 6-hour autonomy is probably all you need.
Sign yours iPad is dying
You should expect your iPad to die (or be no longer functional) when you notice one (or more) of the following:
- iPadOS compatibility issues (it gets outdated)
- Frequent crashes
- New Apple accessories aren’t compatible
- Dead pixels on the display
- Your iPad is unresponsive
- You’re constantly out of storage
If you face some of the signs mentioned above, you should take your iPad to an Apple repair shop, troubleshoot isssues, or upgrade to a newer model.
iOS vs Android: Which tablet type lasts longer?
Many Android tablets like the Samsung S7 & S8 can easily last up to 7 years without being upgraded. Of course, that’s not always the case. In fact, affordable Android devices rarely last longer than 4 years due to weaker batteries and hardware kits.
On the other hand, iOS tablets are very reliable. Many people wonder: how long will an iPad Air last? Well, all the iPads we tested lasted (at least) 4 years without any issues.
Although the iPads Pro and Air last longer (due to their exceptional hardware), the Minis and iPad can also last up to 5 or 6 years.
Some Android based tablets (like the Samsung Galaxy) make for great iPad Alternatives.
In a few words, iOS devices tend to last longer than Android tablets.
How long does a 2-in-1 tablet last?
2-in-1 devices like the Lenovo Yoga or the Surface Pro are usually some of the best tablets on the market. Even though 2-in-1 tablets are also pretty expensive, they can be used as a laptop alternative, or a primary drawing device (because of the touchscreen).
When it comes to the lifespan of 2-in-1 tablets, you should expect them to last anywhere from 4-6 years depending on the brand, price and usage.