How long does a Smart TV last for here in Kenya?
For most Kenyans, a Smart TV is a long-term investment that will be used for quite a number of years.
While TVs are designed for long-term use, it’s worth asking yourself how long you will go without needing to replace your TV.
The choice of when to change your TV will be dictated by some key factors, which we’ll go through shortly.
Most of these factors will also apply to other consumer electronics such as washing machines, smartphones, fridges, and the like.
By considering the replacement period, you can start saving early for a new TV. You can also plan on how to dispose of the old unit to make space for the new one and take steps to extend the replacement period.
We have a number of articles on the best TVs in Kenya that you can use to pick your next new model. Let’s go over the factors that will determine when you’ll need to replace your Smart TV here in Kenya.
Physical damage to a TV can be caused by accidentally hitting or dropping the TV or a power surge that can fry the internal components. Water and other liquids will also cause damage to the TV.
As TVs are very delicate home appliances, most models won’t survive even the shortest of falls, let alone exposure to water or physical force. If you have the misfortune of damaging your TV panel through any of these means, you’ll need to buy a new TV.
If you have kids or pets, it’s advisable to wall mount your Smart TV so as to protect it from accidental physical damage. A TV guard is also a must-have item, especially if your area experiences frequent electricity fluctuations and outages.
Be sure to also install your Smart TV away from water dispensers and taps to minimize the likelihood of water damage occurring.
Taking a domestic insurance package can also provide a sense of security against theft and damage from flooding or fire.
A Smart TV is only as good as the software and hardware it uses. Unlike computers which allow you to upgrade specific parts and install new software, TVs do not have this functionality.
For the hardware, this mainly refers to the available ports. Most TVs come with HDMI, USB, 3.5mm audio and AV input ports. These ports will future-proof your TV for a few years and allow you to connect external devices such as laptops and speakers.
If you plan on using a home theatre or sound bar with your TV, be sure to check that the TV has Bluetooth support or a digital optical port for easy connectivity.
For the software, most Smart TVs run on the Android TV operating system which is similar to the Android OS used in mobile phones. The main factor to consider is the version of the OS that your TV runs.
Some manufacturers use older versions of Android TV in order to cut down costs and make the Smart TV as affordable as possible. This is especially true for TV models from companies such as Vitron and Hikers. The disadvantage of these older versions is the lack of support for new streaming platforms.
Showmax in particular only works on Android 7 and higher, meaning if you get a model with an older Android version, you won’t be able to download the Showmax app.
Other brands use their own proprietary software which works similarly to Android TV. The problem with proprietary software is the lack of updates and patches. This will render your TV obsolete much faster as compared to Android TV which gets updated frequently.
Luckily, you can get a TV stick such as the Mi TV Stick which will allow you to future-proof your TV’s software.
Dead pixels are tiny elements on a TV screen that do not display the correct colour. They can be black or stuck on a specific color like green, purple, red, or white.
They are mostly caused by a manufacturing defect, dust or in some cases, physical damage to the TV screen. Dead pixels lower the quality of your viewing experience and are annoying. Unfortunately, most dead pixels can only be repaired by replacing the TV screen which in Kenya basically means buying a new TV.
Generally, most TVs will function well for 5-10 years after purchase before you start experiencing dead pixels and screen glitches. When this starts to occur, you’ll need to replace your TV at some point.
Most TV manufacturers here in Kenya don’t offer comprehensive aftersale services although some distributors such as Hotpoint and Von do offer repair services.
Manufacturers such as Samsung also offer product warranties which can be a lifesaver, especially for any malfunction that occurs as a result of manufacturing defects.
The cheaper TV models typically don’t offer any support whatsoever, meaning you’ll be on your own if the TV suddenly stops working.
Smart TVs tend to last between 5 to 10 years here in Kenya but this period can be much shorter depending on your personal circumstances and factors detailed above.
While the TV may still function, physical damage, dead pixels, outdated software and hardware as well as lack of aftersale support may force you to upgrade your Smart TV earlier than expected in order to maintain an enjoyable viewing experience.