Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 30th Jan 2013 00:38 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems Marco Arment: "Everyone should play by the same rules. A proposal: storage capacities referenced or implied in the names or advertisements for personal computers, tablets, and smartphones should not exceed the amount of space available for end-user installation of third-party applications and data, after enough software has been installed to enable all commonly advertised functionality. With today's OSes, iPads could advertise capacities no larger than 12, 28, 60, and 124 GB and the Surface Pros could be named 23 and 83 GB." Wholly agreed. When I buy a box of 100 staples, I expect it to contain ~100 staples - not 50 because the other 50 are holding the box together.
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RE[8]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Wed 30th Jan 2013 11:47 UTC in reply to "RE[7]: Comment by MOS6510"
Member since:

I don't think it's telling lies and it should be common knowledge that you have less space to use than the total advertised capacity.

Personally I'd prefer if a device has amount X of memory or storage it should be stated at such. Of course I agree it suck when a device with 16 GB can't hold 14-15 GB of data, even though it's less than the total amount.

But does it improve the situation if you sold such a device, 16 GB, as a 12 GB one and after an OS update you have 11 left. Or if Microsoft shrinks Windows on Surface you suddenly have more space left.

To be honest, most customers don't really care about bits 'n' bytes. They don't want to know how many GB they will get, but how many movies will fit. Which is an ever harder question to answer!

When Apple came with the iPod they said it would hold 1000 songs. Well, it depends on the size of those songs, it may be more, it may be less. Perhaps that was a lie, but it was certainly good marketing because everybody could mentally picture what 1000 songs meant, it meant a lot. X GB doesn't say anything to most people.

So wether you say a device has 32 GB or 28 GB (out of 32) most people will still ask how many movies or Excel files that translates to.

I guess it's best if people just got themselves informed to prevent disappointments. Read reviews, ask other people, talk to the salesman (not sure if that's really a good idea though).

Even when you do know how much storage you have available once you start installing other applications, of which you have no idea how big they are, that initial value becomes less meaningful. A X GB device can't hold 1000 songs, because is has Office Mobile or something else on it and average customers are bad at guessing how that would impact storage capacity.

All in all for the average customer it's all very tricky and changing the system will make all of us have to deal with two systems, the old and the new one.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[9]: Comment by MOS6510
by AWdrius on Wed 30th Jan 2013 12:26 in reply to "RE[8]: Comment by MOS6510"
AWdrius Member since:

I agree that putting a size of space as "1000 songs" is pretty clever. Back to GB thing, question still remains, just give a dedicated, even if, as you put it, wastefull, space for OS + updates only and leave user space untouched.

Installing additional software, etc. will consume user space, but that is expected. You are right that average consumer still cares about how many files he/she can store on the device, but even you and me now cannot trust what's written on the box. It's like buying packed food with indication of gross weight only. One can only care how many people can be fed by that package, but would you not be interested in what you are actually getting in net weight, energetic value, etc.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[10]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Wed 30th Jan 2013 12:31 in reply to "RE[9]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:

I think giving the customer a certain space, which will remain this size, would be a good thing. When free space changes it will then be due to the user installing apps or putting files on it, which the user can undo. Even below average users can understand this: delete stuff -> more space, add stuff -> less space.

Undoing an OS upgrade is less easy and also not wise.

Reply Parent Score: 2