Re: never forget though
Except the lightbulb idea only stands if there's a monopoly or collusion. Otherwise there is a very big incentive to be the one company that does sell the 50 year lightbulb, because you will take the market share from all of the other companies. Ok so it would shrink the market longer term, but not until after you've made your billions!
Same with phones, or indeed any technology - I don't believe anyone deliberately makes things which fail or which *need* to be upgraded. Rather, three related things are at play.
- Firstly, we (collectively) demand cheap, and often buy cheap, which means that companies will make what we want. We often refuse to pay the extra for the quality, long-lasting version.
- Secondly, the "better upgrade" is obvious - technology moves on, things get smaller, things get faster, you can do more in a smaller space. I'd be frankly upset if Apple / Samsung / Microsoft weren't changing their designs every year. They don't do it to make our existing products look old, they do it because design moves on. Would you really be happy if your brand new car was styled like an 80's Rover?
- Third thing is the oft-quoted inability to repair consumer products. I agree that's largely true, but again I think attributes the reason incorrectly. It reads like a conspiracy theory. Car's don't use ECU's to make them hard to repair - it just allows them to do more, more safely, and more cheaply. The fact it's harder to repair yourself is a side-effect. Same with phones and batteries - they're not glued in to make it hard to replace, but rather because we demand the biggest possible battery with the most features in the smallest possible space, the thing that has to be sacrified if the screws and clips and mechanisms which allow everything to be quickly taken apart. We asked for that, and we got it!
I think people too often attribute companies' decisions to some reason that makes it sound like they're conspiring against us. More often, they're just giving us what we want, and somewhere burried within that is a trade-off which has had to be made to achieve it.
Finally, remember - people do make long life bulbs, but the light quality isn't as good. People to make phones with replaceable batteries, but they're bigger or with less battery life so less popular. People do make old style "mechanical" cars still, but they find it hard to meet safety and environmental regulations so sell much less.