It seems like almost every year we see some manufacturer up the ante in terms of smartphone RAM capacity. While 8GB is just beginning to become the baseline in many traditional computers and laptops, phones are catching up surprisingly quickly. Just last year, Vivo unveiled the first device with 6GB of RAM, with other more mainstream manufacturers following along over the course of next year. This trend has continued at a rapid pace, and it doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon.

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How did we end up with smartphones packing 8GB RAM?

How did we end up with smartphones packing 8GB RAM?

January 6, 2017

It seems that Huawei (or least some of its top executives) don’t think that this advancement is necessary, however. In a recent post on the Weibo page of Lao Shi, an executive at the company, Shi discusses that he believes 4GB of RAM is plenty for a phone to run smoothly. He says that many Huawei devices actually run better with 4GB than a 6GB model would, and that the most important thing to do to a smartphone is optimize the operating system to be efficient as possible.

Shi cites Apple’s iPhone, noting that iOS doesn’t need a huge amount of RAM to run smoothly, and that the company has simply optimized the OS to work fantastically with smaller amounts of available memory. He says that adding more RAM only rises the price of a device ‘exponentially’, and that it is simply not worth pushing the boundary of this hardware in our mobile devices.

Do you agree with these statements? I would be hard pressed to ever say that we shouldn’t aim higher, as required hardware will almost always increase as we make our devices more powerful. While this isn’t directly related, take NVIDIA’s GTX 970 GPU for example. The company got in a lot of trouble for selling a 3.5GB DDR5 card as a 4GB one, and many defended the company saying that we would never need 4GB of graphics memory anyways. Now with graphics constantly improving and 4k making a much more common appearance in homes, we are far past this 3.5GB mark for many titles, and the company is now selling 6, 8, and 12GB cards as commonplace.

Let us know your thoughts on this statement. Do you think we will ever have to surpass 4GB of RAM in our smartphones?

David Imel
David Imel  is a 22 year-old technology enthusiast based in San Francisco, California. He loves Android, Writing, Computer Hardware, Mechanical Keyboards, Super Smash Brothers: Melee, among other things