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Why You’ll Regret Buying the 8GB Nexus 4



With the Nexus 4 announcement today, Google introduced two different variants of the Nexus 4, an 8GB model and a 16GB model. And while the 16GB version might still pose a problem for some people, a smartphone with 8GB of storage space and no expandable memory definitely will. Here’s why you’ll regret buying the 8GB Nexus 7 and why you should stay away from it.

On paper, the 8GB Nexus 4 looks like a bargain. And it is. Sort of. $299.99 for an unlocked smartphone with these kinds of specifications is a steal that many consumers will be looking at buying when it goes up for sale in just a couple of weeks on November 13th.

However, drawing from my own experiences and using a bit of common sense, I urge those of you looking at picking up the 8GB Nexus 4 to reconsider as you will very likely be wasting your money and bestowing a future of headaches upon yourself.

Read: iPhone 5 vs. Nexus 4.

Screen Shot 2012-10-29 at 3.53.32 PM

You probably shouldn’t buy this.

Learn from My Mistake

When the iPhone 3GS came out, I bought a 16GB model. Over the next three years, that decision tortured me and not because of the phone choice – I loved my iPhone 3GS, but because of how much storage space I had.

Read: iPhone 5: One Week with Apple’s New iPhone.

Over those three years, I was constantly shuffling music, apps, and an assortment of other files around while trying to maintain storage space. It was a nightmare that I do not wish upon anyone. Keep in mind, this is 16GB of storage we are talking about here, and not 8GB.

There is a reason the iPhone 5 and just about every other high-end Android device in existence doesn’t come in 8GB form. With growing app sizes and with new content coming out on a daily basis, it’s simply not enough space for the average user.

8GB is Not 8GB

It doesn’t help either that the 8GB Nexus 4 doesn’t have 8GB of storage space. That’s right. The 8GB Nexus 4 actually has less than 8GB of storage for your music, movies, and apps.

Screen Shot 2012-10-29 at 3.56.33 PM

8GB is not 8GB unfortunately.

Instead, there will likely be many MBs of storage eaten up by the operating system and other pieces of software on board the Nexus 4. We aren’t sure about the exact breakdown yet, but we expect there to be a little more than 7GB of available space right from the get-go.

That is absolutely limiting and will drive you nuts when you want to download a large file but have to delete stuff to make it happen. Expect that process to happen over and over and over again until you feel like returning the 8GB Nexus 4, just like I wanted to ditch my iPhone 3GS.  If you’re an avid photography, it’s even more infuriating given how much space photos take up.

What You Should Do

Simple. Spend the extra $50 and get the $349.99 16GB Nexus 4. Or, if you’re so inclined, get an Android phone that offers expandable storage space along with the on board memory.

Unless you’re fully reliant on the cloud, then I recommend that you don’t buy the 8GB Nexus 4 and you buy something else instead. You’ve been warned.



  1. Koos Tonteldoos

    10/29/2012 at 4:46 pm

    Have you ever heard about the “cloud”? If you have a good data connection (I have a cheap unlimited one), you can have all your music, videos etc. on there. And local storage is starting to be less important. I am not saying its not important, but its starting to be less of a problem.

    • James Lee

      10/29/2012 at 6:25 pm

      The cloud doesn’t work on most underground subway systems. Which is primarily where a lot of commuters need access to their media files. The cloud is also spotty when you’re traveling on highways going long distances. Although I can foresee a future where cloud access will take over, having a nominal 8 GBs of memory for a flagship phone that is released in 2012 is unbelievable.

      • Chase

        11/13/2012 at 6:31 pm

        I disagree, that would be true if it were only offered in 8 GB and not 16 as well but 8 gigs is plenty for lots of people. I have the 16 GB Galaxy Nexus and the OS/preinstalled apps take about 2.5 GB and everything I’ve added takes about 3 GB, so even if I had an 8 GB model there would still be 2.5 GB leftover and I use my phone for everything. All my music is saved locally, as well as my pictures and plenty of apps and even all my notes from school are saved offline in the gdocs app. I avoid using data unnecessarily because my wifi at school/home is usually <1Mb/s so I have to use my data for everything and even so 8 GB would be more space than I need on a phone.

    • Jeong Zhang

      10/30/2012 at 1:38 am

      Did you read these lines in the article? “Unless you’re fully reliant on the cloud, then I recommend that you don’t buy the 8GB Nexus 4 and you buy something else instead. You’ve been warned.” Which means the author has definitely heard about cloud.
      8GB storage on a phone these days is use-less.

  2. Jay

    10/29/2012 at 7:10 pm

    I guess if your idea of a smartphone is an idiot box to keep you distracted on your commute 8GB isn’t enough.

    What if I told you that most people use a smartphone for communication.

    • Daniel

      10/29/2012 at 7:53 pm

      Jay, why would you even buy a smartphone with such specifications if you are only using it for “communication”. Assuming “communication” is calling and texting. Because if you mean communication as in sharing files, music, photos, social media, whatever, some internal space is actually needed. 8gb might be enough for some, but it may not be enough for others. So yes, if people are buying an idiot box worth a lot of money it’s ok to have someone warn you about how it MIGHT not have enough space. jeez

    • Martin

      10/30/2012 at 2:37 am

      If you bought a smartphone and spend the vast majority of the time to call and text on it, then you’re an idiot for buying a smartphone. Most of the time I spend on my smartphone is spent browsing the web. I also listen to music/podcast/internet radio and watch TV shows and youtube clip. I am using my smartphone like what it should really be called: a portable computing device connected to the internet.

      • Matt

        10/30/2012 at 10:24 am

        Why do you need a portable computing device when you’re probably already comfortable in your mom’s basement?

  3. J.

    10/29/2012 at 8:23 pm

    i Lol’d that you complained about 16gb not being enough on your phone. Sound like you need a laptop. 8gb is a tad on the light side, but its the trade off for the price, thats what makes it awesome, CHOICE!

  4. anton

    10/29/2012 at 11:26 pm

    I agree with J. 8gb is a bit on the light side. but doubling it for an extra $50.. I’ve never used more than 16gb on a phone. Reason being that it’s way better to watch movies on a tablet(saves a lot of space already), and with apps like spotify, you can take your favorite playlists and have those available offline. If for whatever reason you have a playlist of several gigs of favorite music, you really gotta learn to pick and choose.

    In terms of apps, yeah that could be a problem for gamers(why would you even THINK about getting the 8gb version?)

  5. Jack Blue

    10/30/2012 at 4:49 am

    I have an HTC Desire with an 8GB SD card, it’s been 3 years since I’ve had it and I’ve never filled the 8 GB up. There is still 6GB of space free. People just download for the sake of it and never really use all the apps they have on their phone, also never clean up their downloads and other folders up after use; of course they will run out of space. Just common sense people.

    • Jimmy

      10/30/2012 at 11:08 am

      Guy who writes this article doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Android phones don’t eat up as much data as an iphone. apps are smaller on android and it resizes videos when you put them on. so they are smaller to.
      my 1 year old htc amaze with 8gigs of storage has 1.6gigs app space left and still 5 gigs of storage space. I haven’t even begun to touch the 16 gig sd card so buying that has been a waste of 30$. And yes I do have all the music i want on it and video’s. Most are on the cloud you just select the ones you want stored local. When you want something different you just get it off the cloud or plug it in to you computer and transfer it that way. Too bad it’s not usb 3.0 that’s a bigger deal than only 8gigs.

    • larry h

      06/17/2013 at 12:07 am

      I have only used 3.5gb on my galaxy s 4g in 3years you guys get a laptop lmao!!

  6. Ironman

    11/01/2012 at 12:15 am

    Do you store 10-12 movies on your phone ? Coz if you do only then you’ll need more than 8GB. I have a 16GB Nexus and have still managed to use up only 7 GB(without movies) coz I am not an idiot or a fool.

  7. TheOne

    11/06/2012 at 4:31 pm

    Seriously get real people, how anyone would want to quint and watch movies on a phone and play games on a phone which has no joy pad but a touch screen I will never know. 8gb is plenty. Grow up kids.

  8. rohit

    11/08/2012 at 9:35 am

    8GB is not a deal breaker for me and a lot of people, come on it’s only a phone and you might be upgrading in 2-3 years. But knowing what they did with nexus 7, they might phase out the 8GB model (on LG launch quality hardware) and the 16GB might be available at the same price on better quality hardware (samsung?)

  9. Mike

    11/12/2012 at 11:30 am

    Not too computer savvy so help me out please. I have a Nexus 7 with 8 g and most of the time it loads up fast but usually around evening it takes forever to load up. I assume this is due to the carrier and not the limited storage How can I check what the carrier upload speed is..

    • Michael J King

      11/13/2012 at 1:31 am

      Just download the Speed Test app by OOKLA, see That should do it

      • Mike

        11/13/2012 at 10:00 am

        thanks, I will give is a try.

  10. skiz

    11/12/2012 at 12:30 pm

    Fine for me since I refuse to put music on my smartphone – that is my ipods job forever. sorry.

  11. gabam

    11/12/2012 at 3:12 pm

    it also support otg usb

  12. aaek3y

    11/12/2012 at 6:00 pm

    Only time I gripe about insufficient storage is when I travel out of the country and I am like, I gotta get my fav music on this phone, but end up never really listening to all of it. Plus there’s something called OTG usb storage too, but wish it would just have a expandable memory slot.

  13. krysmck

    11/13/2012 at 12:52 pm

    I have the Nexus S. I’m only using 1.2 GB of storage. I highly doubt I’ll regret buying the 8GB (I still haven’t even come close to filling my 8GB ipod….) on the grounds of a lack of storage space.

  14. vrm

    11/13/2012 at 4:00 pm

    google play allows you to store 20000 songs, lots of pictures/videos on picasa and so on for free. I think 8G is more than enough. The only reason I even need that much is to store offline maps.

  15. logan

    11/13/2012 at 9:37 pm

    8gb in my opinion is weak and pathetic. I have 32gb Iphone 4 that is full! I was so excited about this phone till I realized no expandable memory. I have tons of music along with photos that I want on one device. Shame that it’s not larger than 16gb I guess I will end up with a Galaxy S3. I don’t have a ton of apps and dont really ever watch movies just love having all my music on my phone along with pandora and all the other apps for music available

  16. Paul M. Bradley (@BradleyMediaLLC)

    11/14/2012 at 5:06 pm

    Here’s how many songs I have on my 8 GB HTC Sensation 4G (recently flashed with Phablet Jelly Bean, btw) — One. One song. It came with the MOD. In Google Music, I have 8,627 songs (equivalent of 59 days worth of music). My phone is in constant heavy use and I have 4.6 GB of free space. Music is the reason you had to shuffle all of that nonsense. Stock Google Apps solves that for you. If you download 8 GB worth of apps, you have some sort of app-hoarding problem.

    • Yeah!

      11/28/2012 at 7:26 am

      I have more than 11.000 songs on my Google Music. I love it also BUT, as most of the people in the world (maybe not in the USA) I have limited download traffic, so it’s not a valid solution to most of us.

  17. sketchjunkie

    11/15/2012 at 2:52 pm

    This article was never proof read. Tons of typos and inconsistencies.

  18. J

    11/16/2012 at 1:26 am

    My 32gb GNex is filled to the brim. I use my phone for everything. Including a media player. 8gb is a complete joke.

  19. Ferdows

    11/19/2012 at 7:35 pm

    For some people I’m sure 8GB is simply not enough. But you can’t speak for everyone. Not everyone has 12GB music collections or downloads 10 movies at a time on their phone. It really just depends on the user. If they have lots of music, movies, or other files then it may not be enough but for many people I’m sure it’s fine.

  20. West

    12/09/2012 at 8:09 pm

    How will I fit my 2TB media library in this phone, 8GB is a joke.

  21. gmail

    01/30/2013 at 9:21 pm

    If you need 5GB to store your daily mp3 files, you’re abusing your phone, or you need to get out and actually TALK to people (versus, type/text).

  22. kyussmondo

    07/20/2013 at 9:03 am

    16GB is not enough. I have 20GB of music (I used to carry around 120GB on my old iPod but I managed to slim down my playlist for my phone and am not prepared to slim anymore), a map which weighs in at 3GB (for walking with a limited signal) and a few other apps that weigh in at a few hundred MB each. Then I have all my photos. So I have a 64GB iPhone 5. I have unlimited data but I cannot rely on it for Spotify (all my stuff is available offline). Plus always streaming is going to drain the battery quicker.

    I love the cloud. I use Dropbox, Spotify and iCloud all the time but all services store your stuff locally as well (Dropbox on he PC and Mac only).

    The majority probably don’t need capacity like me, but for high-end phones you expect to have premium storage options. I like that Google is ditching SD cards but give an option for more storage!

  23. Namakabrood Abrood

    05/11/2015 at 11:15 pm

    I have a rooted 8GB android phone using a 32GB SD card and Link2SD app + Google cloud, and other free cloud services. I never run out of memory.

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