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August 21st 2014 1:53 pm

Do you need 128GB in a phone?

Bill Gates may or may not have said this statement. And also, it wasn't about memory, but storage capacity. That won't stop Dave from making a similar statement about phones though!

64GB ought to be enough for anybody. Right?

As Apple's fall event approaches, there's no rumor about a new iPhone that tech news websites won't consider. Titanium oxide earbuds? Sure! Optical retina scanners? Why not? Solar powered kinetic pedometers? I don't even think that's a real thing but okay.

One of the more recent (and probably more reasonable) rumors is that the new iPhones will offer up to 128GB of storage capacity. As our phones have become more powerful and act like a central hub in our lives (and with the most recent iPhones offering up to 64GB of storage), it's not too surprising to hear this change.

That said, do you think you could use a phone with this much space? 128GB is equal to the capacity of some recent computers! It probably isn't that hard to imagine though, as the onboard cameras have gotten better and better apps / games have been built. (Of course, where are we going to store all these awesome photos? On the hard drives of our computers? In the cloud?)

My current iPhone has 64GB of space, of which 20.1GB is free. I'm obviously not taking full advantage of the space, but you know what? I really do want a 128GB phone. I could take more photos, store more music (then again, I stream most stuff), and potentially download even more awesome apps (haha, because 12 weather apps isn't enough).

Would you want a phone with this much space or is it kind of unreasonable?

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26 replies

I think the manufacturer's and carrier's excuses for not offering higher storage options are more unreasonable than the thought of not having the choice at all. Cloud services are a joke when you consider how pitifully small the carrier's data plans are by comparison to any actual use. Don't get me wrong, I'm no data hog, I normally have no need for unlimited data but that's where the carriers are trying to push everyone by withholding higher capacity phones. Overpriced data packages are where they're making the most money, especially if they charge overage.

Bring on the 128gb phones with expandable storage! I'd love to not even consider cloud services because you never know when you'll find your carrier's dead-zones.

@Samsung There's no reason to keep your "flagship" phone's base storage stagnant at 16gb for 3 years!
And you wonder why GS5 sales are down.
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If I were to take my entire music library on my phone, sure a 128gb model makes sense.

Is it necessary for most users? No. The iPod touch which maxes out at 64gb (and I do own one as I wanted it to be more 'future proof') is selling great. The iPod Classic at 160gb is not selling nearly as well.

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I have an ipod classic (160Gb) in each of my cars. They are excellent, durable and very reliable. I also have an ipod touch, but it doesn't leave the house any more because my iphone5 (64Gb) is better.
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I need as much space as possible on my phone. I live and work out in the middle of nowhere. So while I have semi-decent connectivity at home and at work thanks to WiFi and DSL, connectivity out in the open is abysmal. Nothing wrong with having tons of video and audio podcasts and audiobooks in my pocket all the time.

Also, having a lot of storage on my phone means I need to offload data to my NAS less frequently, instead of once a week as I do now. I generate approximately 2GB data per week on my phone, mostly photos and videos.

In addition, because of the dismal state of connectivity outside the house, I can't use Google Maps in most places and have to resort to offline navigation using TomTom. The maps data take up a few GB of storage.
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everything is being centralized on smartphones from entertainment (music & video streaming), communication (social media, viber, gsm, whatsapp, smartchat, skype), home security or is it home everything (nest) so i put my bet on phones needing more than 128g of storage capacity to meet our appetite for data
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Davidkilimanjar; Your right, we use to think that we had to have a computer to contact certain programs and apps. that we depended on to communicate by wire. Banking, accounting, business forms and programs like Word, and photo programs, as well as the games. The list goes on and on, but all can be done on our cell phones now. Completely portable, anywhere, anytime, all at our convenience! We are all connected through the world of the cell phones, as we use to be through the world of the web. Now we have both to complete the connection, any time all the time.
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> Would you want a phone with this much space or is it kind of unreasonable?

Depends on price point. Hard drive space is an easy way to up sell consumers. With increased cloud support and faster internet connections, do you really need a large harddrive at all? You could take millions of photos and store them on the cloud.
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The problem is the carriers and sales people are NOT upselling higher capacity phones, especially not for phones with SD slots. Whenever the phone has had an SD card slot, every sales person I've talked to regarding availability of a model with higher capacity on-board storage has said "Oh you can just buy a high capacity SD card cheap". Or they bring up cloud storage, but the cloud won't help you if have no wifi internet connectivity and you've used up your data plan. Every time, I have to try to point that out and how it's not the same, their faces just go blank like their training didn't cover the points I was bringing up.

It's like saying, here you can get this laptop, nothing is upgradeable, it only has a 6gb SSD but you can use USB 1.0 to expand storage out to 4TB. Oh and programs cannot be installed onto USB storage unless you void your warranty.
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MastarPete; That is an excellent point!
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I really have a problem with my 16GB iPhone 5 as I'm missing more space for all my pictures. Currently I have to delete older pictures as soon as I run out of memory. But as I love to have all my pictures with me it would be great to have no limits here - and 128GB feels like "no limit" :)
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When I picked up my 5s I decided to go with 32GB because I got burned by buying a 16GB iPad. If I wanted to keep any kind of music or media on there I'd have no space to keep apps or games. I'm finding 32GB to be a sweet spot right now, but if Apple shifts all the sizes to something like iPhone 6 offers 32/64/128GB and iPhone 6c (hypothetical) is 16/32/64GB then I'd go for the 64GB on the 6.
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I don't think the 128Gb is worth it for me yet. I have my iphone5 (64Gb) configured to upload photos and file storage to the cloud so I don't need the extra storage right now.

I do think 128Gb WILL be needed as people put more and more apps on their smartphones. Some of the new apps/games are large (1Gb+) and getting larger.
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SpecTP; Your right in one sense, that there are a lot of us that don't need the 128 as of yet, but there are also many who want, and actually need, that memory now. for one will soon have no room on my 64GB, and don't want to carry around a portable drive or stick to keep dumping data to free up space on my cell's SD card.
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why not use cloud storage (can be commercial or private variants) to offload the data?

offloading data to cloud is easy.. offloading apps.. that's not here yet.
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I have the Samsung Note 3 32GB and I have thrown in a 64gb MicroSD card in it. I have a couple of small kids and I have most of the card filled up with kids shows/movies to silence them on longer car rides or it we are out somewhere. Then other fun things like 5gb of SNES/GBA/NES roms, and the rest is taken up by music. Streaming is great and all, but there is also something to be said about having exactly what I want to listen to without trying to find it online. Personally, I will be ordering a 128gb microSD card very soon.
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The more space the better. Music, Photos, Videos, Cool Apps all should be with me on my device. Can't wait until I'm able to get that app that can beam me to my appointments on time...
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I'd welcome the advent of a 128GB phone if it put downward pressure on the price of phones with smaller storage capacities.

I have a 16GB 5S, and just couldn't choke down the $100-300 price jump for the convenience of more onboard storage. If a 128GB option was something other than just another $100 upgrade, and acutally meant that base storage levels would increase, I would welcome the move. Otherwise, it would make no difference for me.

As for the microSD option... no. It just never works as well as having dedicated, seamless integrated storage.
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No I don't need. I have a HTC One with 32Gb with a 64 Gb microSD card. I could stick a 128 Gb microsd card in, but I'm not using all the space I have at the moment. I too have TomTom offline maps, music and TV shows on my phone. Of course I could fill all available space, but I don't need it. I do like that I can just stick a bigger microsd card in the phone if I want to, and don't have to buy a new phone.
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It's been 4 years now since I've been using a 128 GB SDcard with my different android phones, with the help of a small adapter (SD-> microSD), and I'm still really happy with it.
I can use my phone to listen to music the same way I used to do with my old harddrive based MP3 players, plus add pictures, movies, and comics in it.
That's great, and I don't need to worry about 3G connectivity, DATA caps, or batery drain for just listening to music !
I always take care to keep at least 10 GB of space on it, so it double as a usb stick when in need to retrieve data from friends or colleagues...
And now that the 256 GB SDXC cards are becoming more accessible (~100 $) I might jump to this size soon !
The problem with devices such as the iphone, is that they use the excuse of no microsd reader to sell you overpriced internal memory, I just hate that... the difference of price between a 16 GB model and a 64 model, is nowhere near the price of a single 128 GB microsd card nowadays (apparently more than 180 € of difference, when the 128 GB microSD card cost around 90 €...) !
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The nice thing about SD cards is that they allow you to expand your device's storage as you need to. The downside of SD cards is that variation in read/write speeds even in the same batch of cards is downright awful.

Plus, I value the unified storage provided by SD-less devices.
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That's too much space ,also it depends on the price .I dont think i need
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My phone has 4GB of space. About 8 GB is enough for me.
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We are all different though. What is good for you may not be adequate for someone else.
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In just a short time, we will be thinking that 128GB really is too small for all,
we want to experience on our devices. The MP on our cameras for instance uses so much more memory than we ever thought we needed. The new, and (exciting), programs that are becoming available are also going to require much more memory. I have learned from experience, that when you purchase any new device, you go for the most you can afford at that time. Trust me, we will be soon saying I really need that 500GB of memory as well as that 500mhz to do what I want.
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No, in my opinion their is no need of 128gb in a phone. Because we can do lots of things in 64gb phone's. what says bloggers my opinion is right ?
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Well, as the saying goes, "I'd rather have it and not need it, then need it and not have it"
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