16GB: the magic number for storage?

There was a time when mobile devices relied solely on the memory that came with the device or was added by a memory card to store data, but those days are gone. Research now suggests that a 16GB mobile device is the perfect size for an average consumer, due to the fact that people can now use the cloud to look after their data, reducing the need for devices which increase storage year on year. People are now less likely to be sold by the idea that a device has a lot of storage, as companies now offer their own cloud alternative to store the deficit.

Analyst firm IHS found that year on year, storage in smartphones actually decreased, and that the average smartphone user only needed 12.8GB – a drop from 13.2GB the previous year – to ensure that they had enough storage to do what they wanted. The lack of desire for bulky storage now means that consumers can concentrate more on getting better spec on other handset features, such as a battery life that lets them use their device for as long as they need to during the day.

This change comes as larger and smaller companies alike begin to move their businesses over to cloud hosting, and it seems that consumers are keen to do the same with cloud storage on their mobile devices. The move to cloud storage also has the added advantage that in the case of a stolen handset, the data is easily accessible via the internet and is not lost with the loss or damage of hardware.

Moreover, handsets can be used to store photographs, for example, which are desired to be kept on the handset, but the cloud can secure others which are perhaps just something which people want to keep long term. The figures indicate that consumers do not feel the need to keep mountains of data on their actual handsets anymore.

The same applies to tablets, which although are increasing as a technology, are following the same dip in trend in storage amount. IHS also found a significant drop in data storage on tablets, of around 25%, as the average storage dropped from 32.1GB to 24GB.

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