Do you need 512GB of storage?

By | 14th August 2018
Samsung Galaxy Note 9

Over the years, our smartphones became such an integral part of our daily routines that it became brutally apparent that we need quite a bit of space on them to facilitate their place in our lives. They need to hold our photos, our videos, our podcasts, TV shows, music, and plenty of apps. For some smartphone owners out there, it's a crucial, critical hub.

It's one of the reasons why when we see a new flagship phone get announced, one of the focal areas is the amount of built-in storage available on it. Now, for most Android devices there's always a bit of wiggle room because they support expandable storage. And while that means spending a bit more to get a card of your choice, it might be worth it to carry that content from one device to another, and not have to rely on the cloud.

But, what's enough?

That's going to come down to each individual. Some people have a lot of apps on their phone. And by a lot, I mean a lot, to the point where someone might wonder how they find the time to use all of them. Others, though, don't need that many, and instead require the space on their phone for other things, like photos. Of course, mobile games can take up a lot of space, too, so the gamer out there might be saving space to make sure they have enough room for that next popular title.

Samsung announced the Galaxy Note 9 last week, and while the handset has plenty of positive elements to it, it's the two different storage options that really stand out to me. The first one offers 128GB of built-in storage, which I have to assume is plenty of space for most people. Even the general Galaxy Note user. But then the company then offered up a model with 512GB of built-in storage, which felt a lot like Samsung just showing off at this point.

Especially when they added the fact you can actually have 1TB of space on your new phablet, because it supports 512GB microSD cards.

I've picked up the model of phone with the most possible built-in storage every chance I could for the last several years, because I download my music and I have a lot of photos and videos. But last year I changed things up and went with a phone with only 64GB of built-in storage. Now, several months later I've got music and photos/videos taking up the majority of the space on my phone, and I'm only using around 25GB. That includes almost 7GB of space used up by the system, too.

I'm probably going to go with a 128GB option again this year, because there are plenty of games with big file sizes I know I'm keeping off my phone "just in case" I need the space at a later date. But I think this test has shown me that I definitely don't need anything beyond 128GB. I certainly don't need a phone with 512GB (or more!) of storage.

But the fact that Samsung announced the 512GB option means that the company sees a point to its existence. With a price tag over $1,100 the phone isn't cheap. But will the draw of that much built-in storage make people ignore the price tag and buy it anyway? Do you really even need 512GB of storage? Let me know!