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Nexus 7 16GB Owners Reporting Lag Issues with Less Than 3GB Free



It seems owners of the Nexus 7 16GB are experiencing severe performance issues when the device’s free storage capacity dips below the 3GB mark.

According to Android Police, as well as several forum posts, 16GB Nexus 7 owners are seeing their Android 4.1 Jelly Bean tablet lag severely when the device’s free storage space goes below 3GB.

Users are saying that once the device goes below the 3GB threshold, its performance dips to the point where it’s almost unusable.¬†Apps apparently lag to the point where they aren’t practical to use and the interface becomes extremely jerky due to the slow down.

Read: Nexus 7 Review: One Week Later.


Nexus 7 16GB owners are seeing severe performance issues when the device has less than 3GB of storage available.

The issue has seemingly by benchmarks that show that performance is much better when the device has more than 3GB of free storage space. It doesn’t appear like the 8GB model is affected. The 8GB Nexus 7 uses different eMMc memory which is its likely savior.

At this point, for 16GB Nexus 7 owners, it appears that there is only one way to avoid the issue.

The solution is to delete content until the device’s storage capacity possesses more than 3GB of free storage and then make sure that the storage never exceeds 3GB.

Until Asus fixes the issue, and it’s possible that it can’t or won’t, this is the only way that some 16GB Nexus 7 owners are going to be able to keep the lag at bay.

It’s unclear if all 16GB Nexus 7 models are affected by this issue but judging by the amount of posts from owners, it appears that many are currently experiencing the issue. And unfortunately, this is the largest capacity that the Nexus 7 comes in which means that many owners, until a fix arrives, are actually dealing with a 12GB Nexus 7 because of all of the pre-installed stuff that’s on board.

While I haven’t been over the 3GB mark yet on my 16GB Nexus 7, I probably will make it there at some point, and this issue worries me quite a bit, especially since I’m not getting what I paid both storage and performance wise.

Have any of you with a 16GB Nexus 7 seen this issue?



  1. Shelley Bevacua

    09/17/2012 at 6:07 pm

    Yes ! I just notice the lag about a week or two ago. I guess you get what you pay for.

    • Sherri Dalton

      09/27/2012 at 3:42 pm

      I have had to do a factory reset twice already. Disappointed.

  2. rspuranik

    09/17/2012 at 7:30 pm

    Yea same problem here. I can’t say I definitely can correlate it with a 3 GB mark but the first time it happened was after downloading several videos from the Ted app. Called Google and they gave me some made up excuse about how it was probably a third party app, had me factory reset… It worked well and now I downloaded more videos and play movies and I’m having the problem again and im at 1.3 gb free. Restarting seems to help temporarily.

  3. Alex Perry

    09/17/2012 at 8:50 pm

    I have been down to about 2.1 GB free but have not noticed the issue. I only was that low to watch some movies and then deleted them off though.

  4. Richard

    09/18/2012 at 12:17 am

    I’m down to 1gb on mine with no problems, but I have recently rooted. Before I rooted with the same 1gb free, I noticed some games really lagging, thought it was just gameloft!

  5. Sully

    09/18/2012 at 12:29 am

    I love my nexus 7 but encountered the same lag problem in the last few days and thought that my nexus had been damaged by my 3 year old son who can be a little rough with it or was infected by third party app (flash player).I did the reset last night and got my smooth tablet back very relieved then see this post today and now I’m annoyed.Still love my nexus 7 but I want my 16 GB. Will forgive Google if they give us a free app for external storage or I will be rooting…
    P.S. Thanks for android Google thanks for giving us a choice

  6. HeartStrong07

    09/18/2012 at 2:35 am

    My experience with the Nexus 7 has not been a good one, touchscreen sensitivity issues, the lag … I eventually gave up seeking replacements and simply opted for a refund.

  7. Matt Hawkins

    09/18/2012 at 4:10 am

    The Nexus 7 is great but I have noticed the lag and touch screen issues. I thought it was related to playing “Nova 3” as that was the only time I noticed it … but I suspect it is this game that pushes it over the edge. I’ve only got 8GB of stuff on it but it is reporting 2.5GB free. So the “16GB” label is proving to be highly misleading. You lose 3GB due to the system files and now you’ve got to avoid using another 3GB. So that would be 10GB of usable space. Come on Google/Asus sort it out!

  8. wcrocker

    09/18/2012 at 8:13 am

    I can confirm the issue in my own usage.

  9. Alex Perry

    09/18/2012 at 8:43 am

    Make sure you clean out your caches. I use a freebie called app cache cleaner. I have a widget on my home screen and clean it out regularly. It may help.

  10. Sam

    09/18/2012 at 9:49 am

    I have the same lag issue,I have the touch screen problems too,I’m waiting for an update that I hope to fix everything.

  11. Amanda (@princessgleek)

    09/18/2012 at 11:36 am

    App cache cleaner sounds good, better then doing it manually

  12. kyles

    09/18/2012 at 12:18 pm

    I have the same problem Google needs to fix this issue or offer something in return.

  13. Rock

    09/18/2012 at 12:20 pm

    Same here. My unit became so slow that I thought it had quit working.
    I hope they get this fixed.

  14. Zack

    09/18/2012 at 3:08 pm

    I, too, can confirm this error. Add in the fact that the Storage graph is highly misleading (it does not include cached Google Music for instance), and this bug becomes even more insidious.

    I would like to see a fix for both bugs!

  15. NH (@Cheops1975)

    09/18/2012 at 7:45 pm

    Yes, it lags until it is so damn frustrating. Media and music will be on the otg. But apps are just not going to cut it if it falls into the hellish 3gb mark. I’m quite frustrated

  16. PurposeTravelerMa

    09/18/2012 at 9:35 pm

    Absolutely frustrated by this issue. Below 3GB of free space I might as well have a $250 paperweight. Reset the device tonight and was more selective on the reinstallation of my apps. Hope Google/Asus man up to this issue with an acknowledgement of the issue and a fix.

  17. Bart

    09/18/2012 at 11:01 pm

    yes, although until now I didn’t realise that the lack of storage space was the issue…

  18. nexus7uk

    09/19/2012 at 9:37 am

    It’s possible to connect external memory without rooting media importer, Google play

  19. fiddlestix

    09/20/2012 at 8:12 am

    yep i have had the lag. then i read this article deleted some files and hey presto the device then speeds up again. i went down to 1.7gb free and i was starting to regret the purchase.

  20. Chou

    09/21/2012 at 1:16 am

    I think I’m lucky. I have down to 1.5G free but didn’t encounter any problems. The only situation my nexus becomes very slow is when coping lot of pictures from my computer. A lot means a few Gs.

  21. brian

    09/21/2012 at 3:47 pm

    same here, apps lags, it’s like watching water boiled. totally unacceptable. I was recommending it to a lot of people, not anymore. All they said about android is true, great when it works.

    This is one of the reason Apple is #1.

    • E.E. Chenoweth

      09/21/2012 at 4:33 pm

      I don’t understand how your comment is valid… this is a hardware problem. More specifically an Asus problem, not an android problem. Its fine if your don’t want to recommend the tablet, however, saying apple is # 1 because of a Asus problem isn’t exactly logical. But I guess that’s a common issue with Apple consumers… they really don’t know how these things work.

      • tito doni asmoro

        09/21/2012 at 5:33 pm


      • brian

        09/21/2012 at 9:34 pm

        It’s simple, really. You can’t separate the software from the hardware, it’s a total experience that counts. Although Asus built it, Goolgle spec’ed and approved the hardware.

        Apple has the majority of the tablet market because the majority of people voted with their pocket book and think it’s better.

        I am not fanatic about apple or google. I give credits where credits is due.

        This lagging soured the experience.

  22. Noel

    09/24/2012 at 6:47 am

    I have experienced a slow down a few times while still having about 10+GB of available space. Another problem I have experienced multiple times (like 6 – 8)…the screen freezes and eventually goes dark for a few minutes then coming back on. I am worried this will only get worst or the screen will go off and don’t come back on. I had a problem with my GNex with reboot and eventually got worst where it was rebooting constantly without coming on…had to send it back. I am afraid the issue with the N7 might get to something like that.

    • Sherri Dalton

      09/27/2012 at 3:51 pm

      I have had a line across my screen, then it goes dark and finally comes back normal. Takes about 1sec. altogether.

  23. gi

    09/27/2012 at 1:30 pm

    Yes, I have this problem too, when powering it up it takes approx. 4-5 main. before it works properly. Shocking! Why is Google remaining silent?

  24. Brian

    09/28/2012 at 11:06 am

    Same for me with my 16g. Affects everything unfortunately. Anyone having problems with touch screen response while having over 3gigs left?

  25. Bobbert

    09/29/2012 at 7:40 am

    People, the Nexus is not intended for tons of local storage. In addition to cloud storage, there’s also USB-OTG capability. Quit log jamming your hard drive and store your big media off-site.

    • Cliff

      10/11/2012 at 2:33 pm

      Says who? People paid extra $50 for the 8G and you are telling them that it’s not meant for heavy local storage? I wonder if you work for Google and if this is their stance, then it just chills me as if it’s our fault that Nexus 7 doesn’t work as advertised.

      • Bobbert

        10/14/2012 at 12:45 pm

        LOL Conspiracy much? I don’t work for Google, and I don’t know what their official stance on the matter is, if there even is one.

        My point, however, is that spending an extra $50 for 8 GB of space is foolish because the tablet offers non-rooted USB-OTG capability and you can get close to 10x that amount of space on a USB flash drive.

        My other point is that this tablet is really intended for people who are invested in Google’s cloud infrastructure (they even advertise it as “built for Google Play”), which includes Play, Drive, Gmail, etc. If you require lots of local, on-board storage, the Nexus 7 may not be the best solution, even with the bigger (but still comically small, in comparison to other tablets on the market) 16GB hard disk.

        Also, I noticed Google pushed out an Jelly Bean update to 4.1.2, Perhaps the issue was with software and not hardware? I’m curious to see if these issues continue to surface/persist.

  26. Gabe

    10/02/2012 at 8:07 am

    I thought it was just the fact that I had too many apps running but after removing all unnecessary apps the problem still remains. The tablet is useable but when I first go the device it was extremely zippy. I paid extra for the 16GB in order to avoid this potential issue so I hope the powers that be fix this soon.

  27. bargun

    10/14/2012 at 12:14 pm

    I am losing faith in google products. My nexus7 is unusable now, s3 phone doesn’t work well with GV, vizio co-star is full of bugs.

    I was making fun of overpriced apple products but now i am spending hours on the internet to solve the issues with google.

    • Bobbert

      10/14/2012 at 12:56 pm

      Did you buy your Nexus7 through the Google Play store? I just had to return my first one (for a screen problem) and had as smooth an experience as I could’ve hoped. Here’s hoping my replacement is trouble-free.

      Also, remember: Google doesn’t make the hardware. When I’ve had problems in the past, I’ve found it more helpful to do specific searches based on the make/model of my phone rather than just broad-stroke “Android” problems. Often times your problem isn’t unique, and experienced people will have easy solutions.

      And, before anyone asks, I’m not a shill for Google, just an Android fan trying to be helpful. :)

  28. ramzis

    10/20/2012 at 1:30 am

    fuck you apple

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