End of life (or end of life cycle, EOL) means the end of production of a product or the end of product or service support. It is the end of the utility of the product from the perspective of the manufacturer or supplier.
No product is produced and no service is provided indefinitely. Lifecycle of any product or service is limited in time, at the end, it ceases to be interesting to the manufacturer or the market and, subsequently, the product ceases to be produced or service ceases to be provided. This also involves the termination of related activities, processes, or services such as termination of sales and termination of customer support.
Termination is notified to customers in the form of a notice of end-of-life (see End of Lifecycle Announcement (EOLA)), and then the product stops being sold (see EOS ). Once the EOL is reached by a product, the manufacturer or retailer continues to provide support but only for a limited period of time.
What follows the end of life depends on the nature of the product or service:
- Real estate, such as buildings, is liquidated, recycled and the like, it may also be replaced by new products
- Moveables that the customers have on them, can either be kept by they owners or have to be disposed of
- Services are terminated and the customer has to switch to another service
- Software at the EOL will stop being supported - if the customer is licensed for the software, they are not required to stop using it, however, there may be some security risks and errors