How much memory do I really need?

If you are outgrowing the factory-provided storage space of your current smartphone, tablet or other mobile device, you may be considering upgrading the memory or even upgrading the device itself. To make sure you don’t end up feeling too cramped too soon, here is some valuable information to help you decide just how much room you really need.

What are you storing?
Think about what kind of things you will want to store on your device. Consider photos, music, video, documents and other files, and the sizes of your collections of each. 1GB (1024MB) of internal/external memory will hold about 350 pictures (2-5MB each), 200 average-length songs (5MB each), 6 hours of standard quality video (320 kilobits per second), OR over 30,000 Excel spreadsheets (30KB each). Keep in mind that these sizes will vary greatly depending on the format and quality of the files you are storing. HD video and high resolution photos can be double or triple the size of standard quality images.

Know your limits
When it comes to memory be realistic about how much storage you currently use, and make sure to leave room to grow. For example: You upgrade your multimedia phone to a new smartphone. You transfer your 250 songs (1250MB), 20 short videos (200MB) and 200 photos (500MB) from your old phone onto the new one. Now you have already used up almost 2GB of storage on your first day! With your new phone that has a better camera, a better MP3 player and a bigger display to view video, you are going to end up using way more over the 1-2 year span of your contract than you ever used on your old multimedia phone.

Don’t sell yourself short by going with a small memory card, because in the long run it will cost you more if you have to upgrade later. When it comes to memory more truly is more, and it’s always better to have too much than too little. and make sure you always have a little room to move.


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  1. Thanks for a great article!
    But: it appears that you have omitted an important detail. Which of everything that is stored on the phone / Tablet, are things that you actually need or even want?
    We behave with phones / tablets, as with our computers. Storing but doesn’t remove.
    In discussing this, I usually tell people to look at their phones for anything that they should be able to remove. Then I ask them to actually delete it. The result? Usually an almost completely empty phone.
    The most obvious is the folder with photographs. I would say that 90-95% is pure junk that would never come to terms of use.

  2. Thanks so much for thee advice! I have no idea what I’m doing when it comes to computers and cellphones and memory and gigabytes in s*** so really thank you so much for your advice and your attention to detail and making sure we understood what you were talking about and taking the time out to post that comment thank you very much for all your advice and taking the time out to help

  3. Great article! It explains in simple words the entire concept about storage and how much space you require. Most people don’t understand the figures and their requirement for storage.

  4. Thanks for a great article. I really need to know how much ram I need on the new smartphone I am researching to buy. I have an eight GB external sd card and download as many apps onto the internal memory can handle efficiently. Any help would be really appreciated. I am looking for advice from anyone. Thanks