It seems that the memory of devices finally became enough for everyone.

Published on January 03, 2019

It seems that the memory of devices finally became enough for everyone.

    Almost a New Year's gift was to find on board my compact “hiking” laptop storage for a half-byte when I thought that there was 256 GB maximum; however, the "lost" 256 gigs immediately showed up on a large "stationary" laptop , which looked at all 512 . Of course, I took into account the capacity of the drives when buying each of them - but after, obviously, there was no longer any reason to think about it. So I forgot - how, by the way, I don’t remember the capacity of my current phone and its predecessor - it seems to be 256 and 128. Or maybe 256 and 64 - it became as uninteresting to specify the number of gigabytes as millimeters, grams or megapixels (another forgotten fetish).

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    I remember how important it was before.In 2010–2013, in the comments to the announcements of Sony-then-first-yet-Ericcson, both the dimensions, the weight, and the camera of the then “Xperia” were subjected to meticulous analysis, and when it came to the RAM and the built-in storage, it felt like "Saw" in the retelling of "blood".

    Now there is no such a glow. I don’t consider years of sorting, transferring and deleting files to clean disk space in vain - with a little obsessive-compulsive disorder once again to clean up with CCleaner how to sneeze or scratch my nose - but I don’t miss the permanent recounting of the remaining space when downloading files, installation of applications and updates, the dimensions of which attract attention only if the phone refuses to download them not via WiFi. Interestingly, you can stick in a Facebook update that is heavier than 250 MB - and why they never talk about it? But, at least, these Zuckerberg Trojan horses always have where to graze.

    How did this happen?


    The tasks of drives on smartphones are quite simple:
    • keep what is created on them;
    • store what is created for them.

    No one in their right mind would use a smartphone to store information at all - from other sources and not designed for mobile use.

    Own photos and videos, as well as applications created for it, etc. - wallpapers, music - and without any help can take a good weight. I know people who have only a selfie with a story on “Instagram” running into a hundred gigs - but such galleries are accumulated usually over a lifetime of not one or two different devices. And they are not kept together because users are so neat and always carefully transfer archives to a new gadget - but because users are faithful to one operating system, especially if it is iOS. In other words, those who have a good camera on a smart appeared no sooner than synchronization with the cloud (but my photos and documents for a whole decade are terribly fragmented by a bunch of different services - and over the years the situation only gets worse).

    However, now the situation with cloud sync has leveled off, which means that the gadget does not require space to store old content, as long as there is enough space to store the new one that will be clicked before the gadget changes.

    However, the user may not notice, even if it is not enough - due to the spell of the function of the invisible extension upload unused files to the cloud.

    "Clouds" were able to bring out of the endless impasse the lack of space for data storage and laptops.

    Laptops have never been synonymous with data storage: no one buys a laptop with the thought "finally I will have where to store all this"- their advantage in portability, not reliability or capacity. Using a laptop as the main repository of important information, at least, is not a secret.

    However, the storage capacity on the laptop was also a matter of autonomy - a question covered by clouds and external drives, against the background of available terabytes of which the increase in the built-in storage by several hundred gigs is a slight increase in capacity at an inadequate cost.

    Unlike smarts, storage of photos for notebooks is less typical: they take pictures on laptops, thank God, a little less. And pictures from all devices can no longer be poured into a laptop, so that they can never be revised again, as in 2008. In 2018, it is more convenient to upload them immediately to the cloud, so as not to revise them from a whole ecosystem of different devices.

    At work, as a rule, it is required that all data on the current project / task got into the laptop, the remains of work files that were not cleaned up in the archives, everyday rubbish that is still accumulated - and that, after two years, a certain comfortable supply of free space.

    The concepts of comfort are different for everyone - it only makes me uncomfortable when I notice that there are less than 100 gigs left in reserve. And in this mode, 256 GB I have enough on different laptops to go without claustrophobia attacks, for the last 6 years, at least.

    The complete archive, and even more so the backups, is in principle correctly stored separately from the working space, especially when it is in an area of ​​increased risk of physical stress. Cloud or external media - who is closer.

    Sometimes laptops are a forced choice, such as video editing. The main variable in this case is the capacity of the RAM, and not constant - if 100 GB on any laptop is not enough to store all the files of one project, the laptop is not a solution: heavy files will eat 256 GB as they ate 128, and 512 GB - like 256, and in general - for all this iMac 3 TB has already been invented.

    By the way, I still remember how I met an editor who dragged the iMac into a gym bag in the unpacked monoblock almost completely occupied the tiny cabin of the motor ship, the video report from which he was preparing.


    More expensive modifications of laptops I take, first of all, for the sake of the chip more powerful and more voluminous. But the additional 128-256 gigabytes of storage go, rather, to the load: if it were only about the increased storage capacity, and not an increase in performance, then the extra charge for several hundred gigabytes at the price of an external storage drive of several terabytes would not make sense.

    My problems with the lack of disk space were solved in a similar way, through the realization that there is not enough memory for the laptop, but I have brains: no laptop can still fully serve as a library when every movie is Full HD from 8 to 25 GB in weight. As soon as I stopped downloading films for the purpose of storage (plus I sent thick folders of files with different junk to the cloud) - it seemed as though I had no more disk space. True, I didn’t buy the external drive either and didn’t start collecting the film library - so far laziness and online cinemas have won.

    It seems that the linear development of data storage technologies has brought this thread of technological progress to the same dead end, in which:
    • ended the race for megapixels , which made some sense, while the discussion was about the difference between 0.3 MP and 1.3 MP, 1.3 MP and 2 MP, 2 MP and 4 MP - but then the laws of physics came into play: further the increase in pixel density increased the nominal resolution of the frame, but without increasing the size of the matrix did not improve its quality. Finally, Nokia Lumia 1020 announced in July 2013 with a 41 MP camera (and Windows Phone 8 on board) brought this chase to the point of absurdity - and, it seems, completed it. The cult of megapixels is over;
    • The race for pixel density on the screens of smartphones is about to end - 760 ppi achieved by 4K displays of Sony Xperia smartphones have already gone beyond the visible with the human eye - and explained by common sense.

    And race for gigabytes of user-friendly data storage space to the queue.

    The average capacity of the built-in memory of smartphones in 2017 exceeded 50 GB per device. In the fourth quarter of 2018, it should have exceeded 60 GB per device :

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    1. What happens if you increase the average storage capacity by 10 times?


    If we imagine that in 2019 the average capacity would increase not by 10 GB, but 10 times: up to 600 GB on average on the device - how much would this affect the effectiveness of communication? You can not even guess - the answer is before your eyes.

    The turn to half a terabyte, passed in 2018 by Apple, already looks quite meaningless. Of course, nafotkat, nasnimaty and pump up all sorts of things on polterabyte possible. But also to lose, in which case, the archive on a half-byte is 4 times more offensive than 128 GB. So, iCloud cannot do without a “cloudy” backup - moreover, 512 GB fit only into the maximum tariff plan of 2 TB.

    And it makes you wonder: how then will the iPhone XS 64 GB with a 2 TB subscription iCloud yield to the iPhone XS 512 GB? ICloud synchronization works quite neatly and seamlessly, so that when using both smarts, the lack of memory would not be felt until 2 TB in the cloud is already full.

    And if Apple introduces an iPhone to a terabyte this or next year, it will only double the degree of this perplexity. But it is unlikely to make it twice as effective communication tool. As today it does not seem that the difference in user experience with the owners of iPhones at 64 GB reaches the eightfold difference - at least, there is no evidence of miracles created by owners of XS iPhones at 512 GB.

    Obviously, the development of storage technologies have reached their“Lumiya’s threshold” - the moment when a further extensive increase in linear characteristics no longer leads to a proportional increase in the efficiency of mobile devices (smarts, tablets, laptops, etc.) as communication tools.

    Moreover, this is true not only for smartphones, but also for laptops and tablets too: an increase in the capacity of the main memory by 2 or 4 times is unlikely to noticeably change the quality of interaction with them.

    Changes brought the development of cloud services and streaming video, which allowed at the current level of development of data collectors:

    1. for the first time ahead of the real needs of the average user;
    2. unload the main carrier from a single device - be it a laptop, desktop or smartphone - freeing up space in its storage at the place of the former shortage;
    3. reduce the cost of the risk of breakage and loss of the main carrier;
    4. Reduce the cost of replacing the device - now you don’t need to transfer data to the new gadget with your hands or throw it behind, fragmenting it by device - automatic transfer, backup in the cloud creates unity, consistency and continuity of user data.

    2. What happens if you increase the average data transfer rate 10 times?


    What happens if the speed of information exchange accelerates with a jerk from the usual “home” 100 Mbit / s to 1 Gbit / s, which the transition to 5G promises to achieve? The mere increase in the speed of downloading movies is not limited.

    Increasing the data transfer rate by a factor of 10 is not a quantitative, but a qualitative change, which will lead to the development of AR (augmented reality), VR (virtual reality) and, possibly, AI into a new orbit; and will pave the way for new formats and communication opportunities, promising us the most unobvious changes so far.

    Moreover, 5G can solve the same problem of lack of storage space better than increasing the storage capacity: tests last February showed a median data transfer rate of 1.4 GB / s at the millimeter frequency.

    This is already faster than writing data to many HDDs - that is, the speed of wireless data download in the foreseeable future will be comparable to the speed of reading from the built-in hard disk - and this may be a non-linear solution to the problem of insufficient storage space on the device.

    Figuratively speaking, if for a 128 GB smartphone, choose between upgrading to 1 TB or upgrading to 5G:
    • the increased drive on the smartphone will make available to the user one terabyte of his date on a smart;
    • 5G - all terabytes of its date in the cloud.

    Of course, the speed and efficiency of gadgets will also increase. But the increase in roominess and speed of work is an extensive change, the dynamics and results of which will not be comparable with the effect of 5G, like the evolution of laptops over the past 12 years - with the Internet communication and mobile revolution that has taken place.

    However, the next communication revolution, the progress of smart and other wearables, the aggregate needs of AR, VR, AI, in turn, will form a new demand - including, for sure, new data storage technologies - and the wheel of progress, obeying the laws of dialectics, will make a new turn.

    By the way, what is heard there, soon you can forget about the battery, too?

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