In the UK, consumer laws say that a store has to fix the problem if you bought a product and it doesn't work for a reasonable amount of time, due to a fault that was present at the time of the purchase.

Now a manufacturer of SSD drives has found that some of their drives have a firmware bug that will destroy the drive after exactly 40,000 hours of operation. Which is about 4.5 years. (This is not hypothetical, it's in the news right now). All these drives will stop working with total data loss and with no possible repair after exactly 40,000 hours in operation.

"Reasonable amount of time" is usually two years, but if I'm lucky and have bought a drive that would have run for ten years, having it self destruct after 4.5 years is clearly not reasonable.

Would consumer rights protect a customer in this situation, considering that a drive just breaking down by bad luck after 4 years would be just bad luck for the customer, if the drive commits suicide after exactly 40,000 hours?

  • A couple of stories about this: source, source. Note that a firmware fix is apparently available for this problem. – Steve Melnikoff Mar 26 at 11:06
  • Also SSD's are well known to have a shorter lifespan than the old hard disks. 4.5 years would be better than I would rely on. – simon at rcl Mar 28 at 16:31

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