One in three laptops fails in three years – study

hp-laptop.jpgThere was a fair bit of interest in the report on Xbox failures we covered recently – the “red ring of death” – and here is some more interesting data about the failure rates of consumer electronic devices. Laptops, to be precise.

The US company SquareTrade has produced a report – 1 in 3 Laptops fail over 3 years – based on a sample of 30,000 randomly selected laptops and netbook computers that were purchased brand new.

Highlights of the study, according to SquareTrade, include:

  • Looking at the first 3 years of ownership, 31% of laptop owners reported a failure to SquareTrade. Two-thirds of this failure (20.4%) came from hardware malfunctions, and one-third (10.6%) was reported as accidental damage.
  • Netbooks are projected to have a 20% higher failure rate from hardware malfunctions than more expensive laptop computers.
  • ASUS and Toshiba were the most reliable makes

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As well as looking at laptop failure rates by make, and type, they also distinguish between total failure rates, accident rates and malfunction rates.

When looking at a 3-year projected malfunction rate by price, they conclude that cheaper netbooks have a 25.1 failure rate, entry level laptops 20.6%, and premium laptops fare better with an 18.1% failure rate.

The report concludes:

While our study found netbook malfunction rates to be trending 20% higher than more expensive laptops, the variance between manufacturer is far greater and should be a bigger factor in making a buying decision. ASUS and Toshiba laptops failed just over half as frequently as HP, which makes them a solid bet in terms of reliability.

Note that SquareTrade is in the warranty business, although this doesn’t invalidate their figures.

Read the PDF >>

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