Interested in buying a Chromebook but don’t know how long the model will last? Just like smartphones have a tentative lifespan, Chromebooks do too. The key factor in determining this is the Automatic Update Expiration Date, or AUE. The AUE is the expiration date of the device, after which the machine will not receive any updates.
Whether it’s to browse the web or run the latest apps, Chromebooks rely heavily on software updates. These hybrid devices automatically install enhancements that provide new features and protect against security vulnerabilities, if any. According to the Google support page, the implementation of these updates depends on the manufacturer. For example, if you buy a Lenovo or HP model, these companies rely on Google for Chrome OS updates. Since Google isn’t making the device itself, it’s hard for the company to keep tabs on each model. And that is why these machines have an expiration date.
Initially, Chrome OS laptops would only last a few years before reaching their AUE. The company recently suggested that the devices last up to eight years. This is how you can check your AUE.
How to check the AUE of your Chromebook
There are two ways to check the AUE of a Chromebook: on the device and through the Google support page. While the first method would be more suitable if you already have a Chromebook, the second is useful if you’re looking for new devices. It is important to know that Google does not announce the AUE of the device before the manufacturer releases the product.
To check the AUE of your Chromebook, follow the steps below.
- Click on the battery icon in the lower right corner of the home screen.
- From the pop-up menu, select the gear-shaped settings icon.
- Click About Chrome OS at the bottom left of the next window. If you don’t see the option, click the hamburger menu (top left) to open the navigation panel. Alternatively, you can type About Chrome OS in the search bar.
- Select Additional Details and see what the message reads under Update Schedule.
- Suppose your device is within the update expiration date. In that case, you should see a message with the AUE.
- If your device is past its expiration date, you’ll see a message that says, “This device will no longer receive software updates. You can continue to use your computer, but you should consider upgrading.”
Check the AUE of a Chromebook online
If you want to check the update expiration date for a Chromebook you want to buy, Google lists the AUE for all models on its Auto Update Policy support page. However, you need the model number of the device. The model number is usually available in the product listing on e-commerce platforms.
- Open the Google Auto Update Policy web page.
- Select a manufacturer from the list.
- Find the model in the list. You can also press Ctrl + F and enter the model number in the text field to locate it.
- Next to the model number, you can check your AUE.
It is essential to check the expiration date of a Chromebook as it determines how long it will last. When purchasing the device, especially at a discounted price, check the AUE as the model might be close to its expiration date. If that’s the case, you won’t be able to get much use out of the device. What happens when a Chromebook passes its AUE? No hardware issues, the device continues to work as usual. However, since the device does not receive any security updates, it is at considerable risk. Eventually, Android apps would also stop running on an outdated device.
This is the expiration date for some current Chromebook models on the market.
- Lenovo Flex 5i – June 2030
- Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 – June 2028
- Acer Chromebook Spin 714 – June 2030