With every industry, as advancements are made, new products are released using the latest and greatest technology. Older models slowly get phased out of existence as products get faster, slimmer, and generally more advanced than their predecessors.
As new technology enters the market, demand for legacy products drops and materials become harder and harder to source. The search will continue until the product hits end of life (EOL) and it is no longer feasible to use in most cases. This is seen frequently in package and crystal blank suppliers who discontinue support of their less popular packages for the newer, more favorable products.
While parts going EOL is not a new concept, in recent years, more parts are seeing obsolescence quicker than before. Previously, companies would give a last order date but now, some manufacturers are ceasing production without offering a last time buy. Factors such as material constraints, high market demand, overwhelmed production lines, and companies simply prioritizing higher margin products all impact parts going EOL.
At Suntsu, we pride ourselves on helping customers find EOL parts and suggesting alternatives to EOL parts. Our sales rep and engineering team are great sources of information when looking for parts for your build. To help EOL-proof your design, we’ve got a few tips and alternatives.
These newer technologies are going to be mass produced and piggybacking off these larger orders can help you secure lower costs and shorter lead times.
When choosing between package sizes, always pick the smaller one (within the limits of your build, of course). Typically, the smaller the package size is, the longer its foreseen future will be so sticking with the smallest option can help extend the life of your build.
When placing orders, schedule them as far in advance as possible. By getting your orders in early, demand can be included into the production planning process. Waiting will not only hurt your costs and lead times but can give you less time to get ahead of a problem is a part goes EOL.
If you would like to work with a supplier that can help you source EOL parts or if you have questions about alternative options, give us a call. We’re here to help you create what’s next!