Internal storage, SD card, iCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon Cloud... sounding familiar? They should, because these are just a few of the many ways that our phones collect and store all of our important information. Smartphones are able to hold so much information like applications, photos, video, music, movies, documents and e-books. The list keeps on growing as we discover more ways to use our smartphones, which in turn requires more memory. Up until now we've steadily been growing in size when it comes to memory, but a recent report from 9to5Google claims that Samsung might just be taking five leaps forward when it comes to the amount of memory we can have in our smartphones.
People often compare smartphones to computers, which isn't surprising as smartphones are computers. Maybe not in the traditional sense, but these powerful gadgets that hang out with us on a day-to-day basis have even replaced the need for any basic computing for a lot of people. Of course, there are plenty of things that traditional computers can certainly do better than a smartphone, such as running certain applications, programs or even just for writing anything longer than a short e-mail or text message; there's no denying that. Traditional computers are also currently capable of storing a lot more than a single smartphone can, which just might change here shortly thanks to these superchips that Samsung has recently started producing.
It appears that last week, Samsung reported to be making “the industry’s first three-dimensional (3D) Vertical NAND (V-NAND) flash memory, which breaks through the current scaling limit for existing NAND flash technology.” 9to5Google also takes the time to explain in Layman's terms that our traditional means of storage is created by layering up the 16GB chips to create multiple tiers of the same amount; so 16GB on top of another 16GB is your 32GB, couple that with another set of 16GB chips gets you the 64GB chip, and so on. The issue for increasing the memory is, of course, the small amount of space you're working with in a smartphone. Even as large as phones are becoming, it is still a considerably small amount of space compared to what you can put into a desktop PC, or even a laptop. But with this new breakthrough from Samsung, visions of hundreds of GBs in a smartphone's internal storage isn't such a preposterous idea after all.
At first I kind of wondered, what would anybody do with 384GB of storage on a smartphone? But that idea quickly vanished once I realized that it wasn't too long ago that I was wondering why anybody would want to do half of the things that smartphones can do today. Memory keeps increasing in these devices for a reason - people are making the transition from traditional PC to smartphone in as many ways as they can. If given the choice, what would your rather lug around - a laptop or a smartphone? As smartphones start to close in on that line between what makes a traditional PC more useful than a smartphone, the need for increased memory is becoming more evident.
Another good use of this chip, if and when it does happen, is that for a while it might decrease the need to have so many different sources of data. I know people who require the use of internal memory, SD cards and cloud storage, which to me sounds like a lot of hassle just to squeeze in some extra space into a phone. Obviously right now, this is one of the most effective ways to increase the amount of memory you can acquire in a phone, and also an effective means of having backups (which you should always have if your information is important to you!) but when it comes to simply increasing the amount of storage you have in a phone, a single chip that can store so many gigabytes seems like a much simpler and more effective solution.
The big question of "How much will a device with this much storage cost?" will obviously remain a secret until it actually becomes a thing, but I imagine that we can expect it to cost a pretty penny until that amount of storage becomes "the norm", as breakthrough technology usually does. You can even refer to the sales of the original iPhone to show just how costly new technology can be, as even on a contract that phone cost you $600 up front with a $200 rebate, essentially making the first iPhone cost about $400. But again, this is just assuming.
Although I have absolutely no need for a 384GB smartphone right now, who knows what kind of new technology will roll out by the time such a chip has been made? I feel like Samsung probably has something in the works that would require so much memory, or else they probably wouldn't be making the chip. Or maybe they're just making a new version of TouchWiz that still takes up half the memory. Either way, the mere fact that internal storage in our phones is even heading in this direction is still a reason to be excited, as it would allow even more possibilities for the future of our smartphones.
Readers, what do you think about the idea of having so much space in your phone? Could you use this massive amount of storage right now, or do you think that it's just too much memory for a smartphone to ever really need? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below!
Image via 9to5Google