Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

ACE - Professor

Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

Hey Android fans,

As probably would have guessed, I have a question about android and how the apps are stored since I'm very interested in the HTC One.

I'm aware of the background data and how to control that, but internal memory is something that confuses me.

You see, on a iPhone, you get the standard 16/32/64GB for use. However, Android has been offering this for a while and I see it has 2 memories, the internal and USB storage. So my question is... Once the internal is full (which in my experience has been around 2Gb at most?) does it go to USB storage?

As the story goes, Android is very different compared to iOS, since with iOS that 16GB is yours to use for whatever you want to use it with (apps, photos etc.), but this one puzzles me a bit.

Clarifications please? Smiley Happy
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
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Professor
Solution
Accepted by topic author Rayosun
‎09-30-2015 1:39 AM

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

I believe storage is unified on the One.  Like some other more recent Android devices, it uses MTP (media transfer protocol) which doesn't require the memory to be partitioned the way you are referring to (with a seperate partition for apps).

 

On Android devices with USB mass storage instead of MTP, I believe that once the app memory was full, that was it.  You can't install any more apps.  You have to remove some, or move the data.  Although I'm not completely sure, I'm not a huge app user, and have never run out of app memory.  Also, many apps that use a lot of app memory, often have the option to move some of that data to the SD partition.  This option can be found in the app management section of the phone's settings.  But this feature has to be supported by the developer of the app (not universal among all apps).

 

Message 2 of 12 (9,097 Views)
ACE - Professor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

Is it really?! Phew! That makes life so much easier XD That kept me away from Android for so long!
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 3 of 12 (9,092 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

There are actually three kinds of memory on most Android phones:

 

1) RAM

2) internal FLASH NVRAM

3) removable NVRAM (usually a micro-SD card)

 

RAM is just like a PC's RAM.  NVRAM is like a PC's hard drive.  An SD card is like a removable hard drive.

 

The Motorola Droid had 256 MB RAM, 256 MB usable internal NVRAM and VZW gave you a 16 GB micro-SD card.

 

I have just recently learned of these extension programs that attempt to unify the NVRAM between the internal and the removable, which means your applications no longer have to know how to install to the removable card (and even those that did left a footprint behind on the internal).

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
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ACE - Professor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

Ah well, that's completely different.. Smiley Sad I was hoping some Androids had the entire storage for app, pics etc sort of like the iPhones do since the internal storage is just too tiny for my liking!

Unless you mean past androids as opposed to now?
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 5 of 12 (8,974 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

Even iPhones have two kinds of memory: RAM and flash NVRAM.  However, you do not have the option of adding additional flash NVRAM in an iPhone.  Some Android phones also have this limitation.  It is a way of selling multiple versions of the same phone at different price points by varying the NVRAM.

 

As my Android phone is now 3 years old (and still going), I am not as up to date with the current capabilities as I could be.  I heard about the availabity of unifying the removable and permanent NVRAM into a single pool only last week, and do not know any details.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
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ACE - Professor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

Yeah but isn't the RAM on iPhone simply for the fluidity of scrolling movement, lag etc. at least in my experience, the apps downloaded toward the 16GB it offers.

With Android, it always downloaded on the internal memory portion. I was wondering if the One was still like the old androids with the internal being for apps which is has been less than 2GB in the past or is it more like iPhone and downloads toward the 16GB they now offer?
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
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Professor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

I think  JefferMC is confused about the original question.  The questions isn't about unifying the internal SD storage with a removeble SD card (which the One does not have).  Its about how the internal memory is partitioned.

 

As mentioned, I'm pretty sure the internal storage is unified on the One.  Its one of the main reasons that Android as a whole is going to MTP.  If you want a more definite answer, you can either wait until the AT&T version of the One is released this week, and possibly get some first hand accounts; or go to other forums and search around to see if someone with a foreign version of the One has discussed this.

Message 8 of 12 (8,851 Views)
ACE - Professor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

I believe you are correct redpoint.

I checked out a GS3 a friend owns although it was in a different carrier and it does show 11GB available. So everything must unified at this point which in my opinion was a great move by Android and manufacturers. Smiley Happy
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 9 of 12 (8,847 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

Okay, I was a little confused, however: Smartphones are little digital computers.  Almost (because someone will come up with an exception if I don't say almost) all digital computers have RAM to store things they need to get to quickly (and CPU caches for things they need even MORE quickly).  They have long term storage.  PC's usually use hard drives.  Tablets and Smartphones use NVRAM instead.  NVRAM is faster than a hard drive, but still not as fast as RAM, and has limited write cycles (like 1000 times), RAM must be able to handle more than 1000 write operations. In short IPhones have RAM and NVRAM and no removable.  Androids have RAM, some built-in NVRAM and some have removeable NVRAM.

 

The switch to MTP (Media Transfer Protocol) for Android was to change how the phone connects to the internal storage and how that internal storages gets connected to an external device (say a PC).  And apparently this does have the effect of allowing the NVRAM not to be partitioned into separate program and media spaces, giving you one big happy pool.  My phone had a tiny program space and a hugh SD card, so I never really lived in the world of partitioned internal NVRAM.

 

And also, the support for this in ICS basically means that phone manufacturers can really only offer big internal storage or removeable media; doing both no longer makes sense.

 

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 10 of 12 (8,757 Views)
Professor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)


JefferMC wrote:

NVRAM is faster than a hard drive, but still not as fast as RAM, and has limited write cycles (like 1000 times), RAM must be able to handle more than 1000 write operations.


That doesn't sound right.  According to the following Wiki article, most consumer NVRAM products can support around 100,000 write cycles before the memory starts to degrade.  And several manufacturers have technologies that can increase that number by several orders of magnitude:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-volatile_random-access_memory

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flash_memory#Writing_and_erasing

 


JefferMC wrote:

My phone had a tiny program space and a hugh SD card, so I never really lived in the world of partitioned internal NVRAM.


You have, just without knowing it.  Every Android device has seperate partitions for the bootloader, recovery, radio, ROM (firmware), and probably also memory reserved for the GPU, in addition to the user-accessible storage.  And probably  a couple others I am forgetting.  This is why people are always freaking out when they buy a smartphone that is advertised to have 16 GB of storage, and discover they only have access to maybe 12 GB of it.

 

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Contributor

Re: Android internal memory - a little clarification please :)

I have Galaxy S2 with same problem says memory full.....will not allow updates will not let me remove any apps except the card game i put on there...I talked with AT&T and they say that Samsung suggested to clear the RAM memory but it only clears it temporarily when it closes the apps to clear it.....internal memory is 1.97GB.... usb has lots of memory available and the sd card shows 7.37GB.....I have already moved anything that the phone will allow to my sd card and i do not save any card games when i play them.....is there a way to utilize the usb partiton or sd card rather than the RAM memory?

 

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