Re: Designed to fail?
Easily fixed. Revise your consumer protection legislation to remove any fixed time period to limit the warranty and ensure that protection lasts for "the reasonable life of the product".
Of course, this then raises the question of what is the "reasonable life" of a given thing, but in practice this is easily assessed on a case by case basis.
This is how it works here in NZ. And "work" it absolutely does. Any time a retailer or manufacturer tries to play hardball claiming that something is out of warranty, just mention "Consumer Guarantees Act" (CGA) and they soon start acting reasonably.
An important aspect of the CGA is that any explicit warranty terms that attempt to limit a warranty by "trumping" or overriding your rights under the CGA are unenforceable and void.
So, for example: Apple tried to tell me that they would not replace the keyboard cover for my iPad Pro despite being only 2 weeks old because their terms and conditions state that replacements will only be provided for faults within 10 days (!!!) of purchase. Quite apart from the ludicrous nature of this, the fact was that my keyboard was delivered two weeks before the iPad itself so I had literally no chance to identify the defect within their ridiculously limited window.
But rather than having to argue that, I simply referred the Apple drone to the "reasonable"-ness clause in the NZ CGA and the fact that their T's and C's simply did not apply.
Other companies are far more reasonable from the get go: A Logitech Harmony remote (one of the older ones) stopped working after 3 years. The springs on the recharging dimples on the base unit wore out so that the remote would not couple and re-charge on the base. After a year of getting by with foil pads to bridge the gap, this too eventually stopped working.
I contacted Logitech who sent me brand new replacement remote and base unit - without a quibble. I didn't even have to pay postage.
More directly related to this thread, an HP NetBook we bought for my daughter turned out to be a lemon. At 18 and 24 and 36 months it suffered various faults necessitating replacement of variously the keyboard, screen and mainboard (sometimes combinations of 2 or all 3). To be fair to HP, they never argued about fixing the fault but after the last time getting it fixed we flicked it on on Trade Me (local equiv of ebay).
Note: The person that bought it from us was still protected since the CGA applies to the manufacturer, not the retailer. So if that NetBook continued to suffer faults HP would still have been required to step-up and fix it. We were just fed up of having to deal with that.