Storage on my Nexus

Why spend an extra $50 and still not have enough space on your smartphone when it comes with Google's cloud? 

When you visit Google's Nexus 4 page and click on the "Shop now" link, it takes you straight to the 8GB version. (Go straight from the Play Store and you get 16GB. Go figure.) There's a reason for this, they want you to see you can buy the smartphone with the best specs available for (a whole dollar) under $300. That puts the Nexus 4 squarely into the impulse buy realm, and serves as a notice to other people selling phones for a whole lot more. It's $400 dollars cheaper than the closest competitor, and that means something.

Read on.

For some folks, 16GB or more internal storage means wasted space, and wasted money we could use for something else. I've used my Galaxy Nexus every day since I got the thing, and still have over 11GB of the original 13.3GB free. That's 11GB of space I had to pay for, and will never use. T-Mobile offers fully unlimited HSPA+ 42 plans, and even gives you a price break when you don't subsidize a phone, so I'll never run out of data, even if I'm not at home using Wifi. I wish the Galaxy Nexus had been offered in an 8GB model at a lower price. Yes, I said it.

I have thousands and thousands of pictures and video in Dropbox and Google+, 125 days straight worth of music in Google Music, and endless Hollywood entertainment from Netflix, HBO Go, Xfinity Player, and Google Movies and TV. There is no way I could fit all of this onto any device. Having it in the cloud also means I have it on every Android device I own, including oddballs like the Nexus Q and Google TV. It's a win-win for me, because if I had to depend solely on physical storage on the device itself I would lose most of the media I have. Since I'm forced to use the cloud anyway, I'll pocket an extra $50. One day we'll see smartphones with terabytes of storage, but until then I have to use the cloud. I know I'm not the only one. You're still going to need the cloud if you have a lot of media, there is no way around it.

I guess I could give Google the extra $50, and still not have enough storage, but instead I'll use it to pay for next month's service, or a trip to the movies with my wife. There's a case to be made for buying the 8GB version, and I fit that case. I'm glad Google is giving me the option. Sure, a 16GB version for $50 more is still a good bargain, but I can think of much better ways to spend that money versus giving it to Google.

 

Reader comments

The case for the 8GB Nexus 4

157 Comments

I don't hope for terabytes of space on a smartphone. I hope for faster cheaper more vast and reliable data networks. The cloud is the future but not yet. It's to inconsistent and too expensive for right now.

The cloud is good for certain tasks. Having a ubiquitous backup of all my contacts and my calendar events is great. Having shared dropbox space between colleges is awesome. But I for one am still NOT sold on using the cloud as the main storage for all my music and video media.

It is a dealbreaker for me if I can't get at least 32GB and 64GB options for my next tablet or smartphone. I still love the idea of microSD for media storage, internal memory for OS and apps. It works well for me. I don't understand how you cloud lovers can rely on an constant internet connection whenever you want to listen to music. Do you not travel? When you're flying at 30,000 ft and a lame movie is playing on your flight and there's no inflight wifi, how does having your music and movies in the cloud help you then? Or what if you're away on business or vacation. You're lying on the beach, do you all pay through the nose for roaming data plans just so you can listen to a song? Isn't it easier to just have the music stored physically on your device? I don't think I'll ever go all cloud all the time for these very reasons.

According to Phil USB OTG doesn't work on the Nexus 4 out of the box. So I guess to make this "unlocked" stock android phone work for me the first thing I would have to do when I got it is to root the phone. That is a very sad thing. Storage is a whole lot cheaper than cellular data.
I love everything else about this phone so maybe I will buy it and go back to using an MP3 player with a decent amount of storage for my music and podcasts. Google.... driving users back to extinct technology.....
The fact that google dramatically overpriced the extra 8 gb of data for the 16gb device and it still was the first to sell out shows that the cloud storage option google is trying to force upon users is not what the majority of users want.

For me personally not a deal breaker USB OTG for my larger files or when remote access to my NAS drive is not available just as guilbert10 put it.

Each to their own I guess and I cannot argue that larger space would be appreciated but as no combination of phone and SD card is available for my 150+ gig of media having 16Gb or 64+64Gb makes no difference.

Case against: I have about 8-10GB of music. This fits on a 16GB storage volume with enough to spare. Also Internets are expensive here, so streaming simply is not an option. and if my PC or TV is not adequate, I'd watch videos off a flash drive on my tablet. :D

It only works if an Unlimited plan is available and economically feasible in your corner of the planet. Which it isn't where I am. And paying an extra $20 a month to save on $50 up front isn't a good deal for me.

The time for Everything In The Cloud isn't here for me yet.

This is exactly right. The vast majority of Canadian smart phone users have 500mb of data and the monthly rate increases significantly from there. I'm completely unwilling to exchange local storage for a larger monthly bill just because "The Cloud" is the new "cool" thing. It's simply not a viable solution here.

And to those that asked yes I do want ALL of my music on my phone at once - When I listen to music I use random shuffle and get whatever I get. Why would I want to mess around with deciding at any given time which music to move on and off the device? Local storage is low maintenance.

Agreed, though if Google put an FM radio in the phone, I wouldn't really need my entire music library though ... lol. However, I'm starting to run out of space on my Nexus S too, but since Nexus 4 is an entire single volume, at least my apps won't run out of space lol.

Just wished there was a 32 GB version, that's all I ask, I'm not even asking for a MicroSD slot.

I feel terrible for people who don't live in covered areas yet, but seriously, if it works in your usual locales, grab Wind. I've had it for almost two years, it's great. I've saved a few hundred bucks in monthly fees, and I might be able to justify the 8gb Nexus 4, too. It's win-win (for me, and hopefully you, too).

That said, I miss expandable storage and would love a 32/64/even 128gb version. I just feel like, if I can't get the minimum of 32gb I wanted, with the price half of what I expected, maybe I'll just totally compromise and use the phone with lots of cloud services, maybe get a Cowon or Nexus7 for media consumption when travelling or whatever.

You streaming music fanatics just don't get it.
The point of having 8-10GB of music on your phone is NOT that you listen to all of that music every day. But that 8-10GB of my personal music collection fulfills 80% of my music needs, the remaining 20% I stream which enables me to stay under my cap.

That 8-10GB that I have on my phone is my collection of favorite artists,genres and albums, and personally I don't want to have to swap music in and out constantly. I just want to have my favorites on my phone ready to listen to without gobbling up my data allowance.

Other people may have different music habits, but for a lot of real music fans this type of usage is common. It's why iPods were so popular.
Also I don't want to listen to my favorite music at a variable streaming bitrate, I want to encode my favorite music at a bit-rate I'm happy with and get quality music to listen to in my car, things that

You streaming music fanatics just don't get it.
The point of having 8-10GB of music on your phone is NOT that you listen to all of that music every day. But that 8-10GB of my personal music collection fulfills 70% of my music needs, the remaining 30% I stream which enables me to stay under my cap.

That 8-10GB that I have on my phone is my collection of favorite artists,genres and albums, and personally I don't want to have to swap music in and out constantly. I just want to have my favorites on my phone ready to listen to without gobbling up my data allowance. I'd rather save that for watching youtube videos that I find when I'm out or netflix. Things I really need to stream on demand, not things that I listen to over and over that can be stored on a sd card that costs may $30 extra to just add to the smart phone.

Other people may have different music habits, I realize that and for people who all streaming works I'm happy for you, but for a lot of real music fans this type of usage is common. It's why iPods were so popular.
Also I don't want to listen to my favorite music at a variable streaming bit-rate, I want to encode my favorite music at a bit-rate I'm happy with and get quality music to listen to in my car, for some music streaming is good enough. It's not good enough for Rush for example :)

Google Music man! I have 7500+ music files uploaded and can listen to it almost anywhere. It also replaced my music player at home. Like others have said, you can save stuff for offline if you are going to be away from cellular or wifi.

Google music is overrated. They need to fix syncing issues and the ability to import m3u's. Or make playlists easier to make.

Google hasn't updated play music with any useful features in months.

+1

tried to use this as the daily music driver but lack of 2-way sync is a deal breaker. The interface needs a cleanup too.

Jerry, I've been wondering how the cloud works with streaming of media. Do you have to download the entire file before playing it or can you sudo stream it? I'm planning to set up my own dropbox like share using owncloud (or something similar) to connect to a home server. However, I'm still unsure if I would have to locally store and sync files like dropbox typically does with the desktop. Can you explain how all this works?

Google Music buffers the first few seconds then starts playing, once it fully downloads that song it pre-caches the next track on the playlist or album and so on until it caches the entire list/album

I use subsonic, located over subsonic.otg

Love it you can host it locally and open port to get your media on the go.

I just got setup with gigapros and for ten a month I get 100gbs of storage

I use subsonic, located over subsonic.otg

Love it you can host it locally and open port to get your media on the go.

I just got setup with gigapros and for ten a month I get 100gbs of storage

You've asked "what color is my rope?" Nobody knows what color your rope is and nobody knows how your unnamed, self hosted service deals with streaming/downloading.

Case for a 32 GB 400 dollar version. Data speeds are crap in some locations if you leave a major city or sometimes during peak hours to make streaming painful. Also, where do you put your titanium backups and nandroids? I can barely keep 1 backup of each on my phone (Gnexus GSM). And then add on those who like to play games and record HD video on their phone then you were out of that 16GB long a go... I'm just saying more options would have been better, or an SD card slot; but I won't start that whole thing...

I don't know if you paid for Titanium Backup or not, but the paid app allows you to save your backup to Google Drive, Dropbox and Box. You could use all 3 services and schedule them separately if you wanted lol. Video recording can be saved to the cloud as well, and few people would shoot 16GB of video at one time. The only things that truly eat up my storage space are game apps. I use the cloud for everything else. If you don't want to use Google Music, don't forget about apps like Audiogalaxy, or installing Orb on your PC if you wanted to serve more than just music.

I think you would need to ask yourself how many Ti Backups and Nandroids are you keeping? If you have multiples... why? You can only use one ROM at a time and I would think, it's taxing to swap ROMS near daily.

I personally have no Nandroids or Ti Backups on my device becuase I realise they take up a LOT of room (not to mention Ti Backups sometimes get corrupted and become useless). I've got 25 games and a little more than 2GB of pictures on my Galaxy Nexus and still have 5.7GB free.

I'm with you on the data speeds and using data during peak hours.

Yeah, sure, as long as Google doesn't pay my data bill, I won't (and can't) use the cloud as excessive as they intend me to do.

And with games like "The Bard's Tale" with about 4,5GB it's not gonna get easier. You can't argue with "it's a dev phone!" anymore, this is clearly stated to be a consumer device. I'm listening to A LOT of podcasts (video and audio), I'm often on the road and I don't want to sit down every few days to see what I have to delete now to fit in a new game or some new podcasts.

Google got it with the Nexus 7, then why not offering the phone with 32GB, too? They would even make money with letting pay people $50€ more for 16GB more storage, flash costs nothing nowadays...

So yeah, maybe you'll say "Then the N4 isn't for you" but the heck, I don't WANT to unlock my non-Nexus device and toy around with a dozen of ROMs until I find one that somehow runs, has like 3 hours of battery life and freezes again and again.

Yeah, but you willfully chose the "SD" version to save the space. The "HD" version clocks in at 3.5GB (don't know where he got 4.5)

You can say it doesn't matter, but no self respecting nerd gamer (someone that actually knows the difference between an S4 and an S4 pro soc) can deny themselves the twinge of pain when they have to choose the "SD" version to save space, even when it is only being played on a 4" screen.

Anyway, I'd love to "live off the cloud" but there are just too many instances where the lack of a reliable cell or Wifi connection leaves me high and dry. Maybe if I only traveled to report on networking gear I could always rely on a connection, but I don't. I don't travel that much for work, but the little I do leaves me connectionless a fair deal.

-Suntan

I have the bards tale with HD textures, GTA 3, max payne , dark meadow, other tegra games, also two emulators with a handful of ROM for them still have 3.7gbs of free space.

Also sounds like you need a different cell provider if the normal commute in your life leaves you with out the paid service your using.

Business travel brainiac, not a commute. Try streaming a Netflix movie while sitting in an interior hotel room (with no wifi) and getting a 0.23 MB 3G connection. Not feasible.

-Suntan

You mean $350 cheaper and $300 cheaper for the same amount of storage of it's closest competitor?

That only works for you so well because of two key factors, Unlimited data, and good coverage anywhere you go. A lot of people don't have those benefits. While offering a cheaper low storage volume is nice, they could just as easily have offered a larger one as well, for more. (Especially considering that onboard storage like that doesn't actually increase steeply in price with size.)

Personally, I'd have done the 8 and a 32GB version (at $100 more) I think this covers both ends of the spectrum better.

How's living in your Mom's basement and never traveling working out for you? Some of us leave a major city from time to time. You should try it sometime. Even though it might mean risking a poor data connection.

I could deal with it, as long as it allows MHL connectivity so I can use an On The Go cable and plug in a USB drive.

My biggest issues with the Nexus 7:

- no memory slot
- no MHL
- no HDMI out
- no rear-facing camera

I wish the specs were more clear on these devices, since you can't go to the store and try them first.

Even better... 200 for cloud only.

JH would have so much extra cash on hand he could take her out 3x. Happy days for the cloud lovers.

I've had absolutely no problem with 8GB on my Nexus 7 and could easily manage with the same on my phone. I know not everyone can make 8GB work for their use case, but some of us do exist!

I've gotta respectfully disagree with you on this one, Jerry. I think the 16gb is an absolute minimum. I've currently got the 8gb Nexus 7 and I run out of space all the time. I can't keep more than one Nandroid backup and I can't even keep the latest Titanium backups on it either as they take up more than 1gig with all of my apps and data. 16 and 32 should be the minimum defaults IMHO.

You say you disagree with Jerry, then you babble on with a bunch of crap that doesn't disagree with anything he said. Read the article. He said 8gb works for him and then he told us how/why.

There are many, many people who for various reasons cannot depend on the cloud. It's either not reliable where they are, not available, limited or too expensive. It kills battery, and it's slow compared to local storage.

Google really needs to get back to what they started with the G1 and Nexus one and get off this apple style hardware limitation kick.

The software side is coming along nicely but the artificial hardware limitations are silly.

I wholeheartedly agree. These are purely invented problems. There is no good reason for intentionally building flaws into these devices.

Sorry I just disagree. These are all good arguments for a 16GB phone. There is no good excuse for an 8GB phone at this point. Its actually kind of ridiculous when you think about it. What other high end phone is being offered with 8GB of memory? Answer: none. That alone should tell you something; this 8GB offering is just being nonsensically obstinate. Not everyone has unlimited data, or consistently reliable data. I'm all in on the cloud but this is rowing against the tide for no good reason.

Well, I can think of one good reason. Nexus gadgets are supposed to be developer tools. A small dev studio can buy a $300 phone and have plenty of space to try out a couple of apps that they might have in development.

I agree though that trying to fit everything into an 8GB phone is kind of an effort. But let's not lose perspective, who thought anyone would be able to by a cutting edge phone off contract for $350?

If Nexus devices are supposedly "developer tools" then what's the whole point of the 16 and 32GB Nexus 7 and Nexus 10?

No need to make an argument where it isn't needed. All I was saying was that I could see developers happily buying the $300 version.

Anyway, a 16GB phone for $350 is still pretty darn impressive. If you need more storage, get a GSIII, that's what I did.

-Suntan

Then why did you originally reply then?

I am sure that "if you need more storage, get a GSIII" is actually the message they want to convey when launching a device.

Regardless, I hope this nexus flops.

This "development tool/phone" excuse has grown quite old. It is no longer justifying the things that are being done to the nexus line. The nexus line is simply an unlocked phone that runs vanilla. Please look at the official page for the Nexus 4 and tell me where it mentions developers or development. It is being pushed to consumers.

Not everyone has crappy unreliable service either. You guys act as those everyone is is in the same boat as you are.

8gb with unlimited data? All good!

8gb with capped data? No good!

16gb with capped data? Somewhat better!

Anyways, I agree with this article. If I were to get a Nexus 4, I'd get them for the whole family then sign up for a T-Mobile unlimited 4g family plan for $140. That's $40 cheaper than I pay on VZW.

So, basically:

On VZW: $600 for 3 on contract phones + $180 a month for 24 months = $4920

On T-Mobile: $1050 for 3 Nexus 4s (16gb) + $140 a month for 24 months = $4410 ($4260 for 8gb phones)

Total savings: Over $500!

Yeah, I'm sold. Heck, I could switch to all N4s now, pay the VZW early termination, sell my old phones and *still* save money. Yeah, totally sold.

The case against the 8GB Nexus 4: It doesn't have LTE, so cloud storage doesn't make sense either. If it was on Verizon I would buy it day 1.

I think the one thing I haven't really heard is this. Google just offered one of the most powerful smart phones on the planet for 299, contract free. That's pretty damn impressive. Yes it's missing LTE but this cost the same as a iPod touch.

While 8gb doesn't meet my needs, it's pretty obvious we all use our phones different. I just wonder why not offer the 32gb version?

I'm considering picking up the 16gb model. I don't know much about these GSM phones and bringing them to T-Mobile, would like a simple guide with some popular options. Also could I get the 3G nexus 7 and nexus 4, have 1 plan and just swap the sim card back and forth?

Get the non 3G N7, and install FoxFi or WiFi Tether on the N4. Less hassle and you can connect your laptop, etc. as well.

I think 16GB is the minimum as well. You can't put your apps in the cloud. After I got the "insufficient storage available" message on my current phone, I decided I need at least 16GB.

I still have 27Gb of free space on my Gnex. I've never understood the people that say they need to have 500+ pictures and 1000+ songs on their phone. When are you ever going to need to sort through 500 photos on your damn phone?! I can understand music, however I'm betting out of the 1000+ songs on the phone no more than 200 get listened to on a regular basis. Different strokes for different folks I guess, and that's alright.

No, I've never really felt the draw of playing games on my phone. If I do it's stupid ones like angry birds. I have wind up knight on the xoom, but that's about it. I do see the need for more storage for games, since some of the newer ones are memory hogs

These phones are also great for watching movies but you can only store a couple movies on an 8GB phone. I currently have a 32GB SD that's almost full with movies to keep my kids or myself entertained while we're traveling or whatever.

What happens when you are out of your Carrier's range and there is no wifi, so much for that, you can kiss all those files in the cloud good by. Stubborn as a mule and just as dumb, there is no excuse for any top of the line device to have anything but 32gb of internal storage unless it also comes with sd card. You can spin it any way you want, it is just ridiculous. 8gb of storage, after the OS you are left with under 6mb. Jerry you can buy that 8gb version but I would bet you don't, Try reselling the phone, you won't be able to because no one will want it. There is NO reason for the Google Nexus to make such a pathetic device. It will cost about 50 cents more per phone to make a 32gb model and they would sell twice as many. DUMB, DUMB, DUMB.

So Jerry what if I want to show someone one of my race videos while sitting on the airplane? Or in the native 720p I shot it it, vs. a dithered down bandwidth-capped resolution from YouTube? Or keep a couple of my personal blu-ray rips on my phone that clock in around 3GB each for watching anytime, anywhere?

Everytime I buy a new phone I copy the picture folder off and on to my new phone; I now have folders from the TouchPro, Treo 700p, Treo 800w, Palm Pre, EVO 4G, EVO 3D, and Amaze 4G all on my Galaxy Nexus and I'm struggling to keep 1GB free on the phone. When I get my Nexus 4 I'll have to make some decisions about what pictures to keep on it, but I like being able to quickly scroll through my photo timeline at a moments notice vs. waiting for endless Facebook page refreshes.

Sorry, but on-device storage is King; the cloud is an accessory.

All this thread has proven is that everyone has their own use case (example I could live with 8GB as long as I don't keep a bunch of Nandroid backups on ROMs on the phone) but Google ha their own idea of how their products are going to be used.

All I can say is as much as I hope it doesn't happen this might be a repeat what happend with the Nexus 7.

PS: Will the next round of articles be how 16GB on the Nexus 10 isn't enough?

16GB isn't enough (for me) and that's one reason I won't be getting one. My 64GB iPad consistently only has 5GB free on it (down to 1GB if I'm traveling for more than a couple of days and I pre-load it with more movies).

Could some body make a case for the Nexus 4 which has an SD card slot and perhaps LTE... saw this kinda case for the new ipod touch today....

I currently have an LG Optimus V with 175 MB of storage.... I have a 32 GB SDCard filled with music ONLY. I don't even know if I have a nandroid backup because I don't screw up when flashing. I think I could do with an 8 GB phon

I understand and can see where Alex Dobie is coming from with more storage, but I can also see where Jerry is coming from. I'm glad AC is.representing both viewpoints. There's too much nexus bashing. Unless you listen to lots of music you can pretty much survive on 8 GBs.

A strong reason against cloud storage for music is being limited in what music apps you use. While most of the Google apps are excellent, Google Play Music sucks when compared to PowerAmp and other players.

I skipped the Nexus S for its lack of storage and I made the choice to try Verizon's Galaxy Nexus because it had 32G (I have regretting giving Verizon my money ever since, after the appallingly bad treatment they've give the Galaxy Nexus).

I'll definitely hold out for a larger capacity nexus 4 or wait for another phone. And that's a shame, as I could easily justify spending the money for a new Nexus right now.

Some folks suggest just getting another phone, but they miss the point that what many of us want is a Nexus with more storage. I don't want an S3 that I have to wait for updates or fight with locked bootloaders or any of that crap. I just want a real Nexus with more storage. Is that so wrong? ;)

I can't rely on an 8GB phone. While T-Mobile is ok here in South FL, it's not that seamless streaming music from Google Music, and I already have 1.19GB of apps on my 16GB Galaxy Nexus. What if I had an 8GB phone, and decided I wanted to pull the trigger on some of the more popular games on the Play Store? In about 2-3 games, I'd be done - no more pictures, music, videos, etc on that phone. I'm comfortable with 16GB now (actually 13.33GB), and that's only because all my music is on the cloud. I would LOVE a phone with 32GB or more of storage (or an SD card), just to put some stuff on there to watch just in case I got caught at a doctor's office with no reception.

For me there is *ZERO* case for a device with puny storage.

I don't *WANT* to be dependent on the "cloud".
I don't *WANT* to store my files outside my control.
I don't *WANT* to use up bandwidth to get access to my files.
I don't *WANT* to worry about if I do or don't have cell coverage.
I *DO* want instant access to my music and photos and such.
I *DO* want space to install any apps I want without worrying about space.

$50 for 8GB more is a total rip off..... and absolutely worth it. And even 16GB is still *WAY* too small for a high-end device. With no SD card, it should come with 32 and optional 64.

It astounds me that you could call a $350, high end, unlocked, quad core smartphone a rip off considering the specs that this device has. 32GB as a base model would be overkill for most people. 8GB is enough storage for music and pictures during the 8-10 hours each day that most people are away from home and not within Wifi coverage or without access to their home PC.

Look at it in perspective: this is a niche phone that Google is already likely selling at or below cost, that will not achieve high sales volume. Google's focus was to compete with the carriers with an unlocked phone at a subsidized price and this is a pretty damn good way of doing it.

They will likely release a version later with 32GB as it becomes cheaper to scale production, but by competing on price they had to make some sacrifices somewhere and pushing storage to the cloud is totally in line with Google's strategy.

If you "DON'T WANT" to manage your phone to stay within 16GB and refuse to use cloud storage, it sounds like you "DON'T WANT" the Nexus 4. If the rest of its features are enticing enough, people will learn to manage their storage better and lean on cloud services and Wifi.

If its a make or break issue, buy a USB OTG adapter and a 32GB flash drive. Its less than $50 and your problem is solved.

So you propose that each day one should shuffle around all the music, photos, videos, and large games they MIGHT want to see/use during a single day? No thanks.

And carrying around a flash drive and cable around is not very elegant.

What I said was a rip off was charging $50 more for just 8GB ADDITIONAL storage. 8GB is worth maybe $2 integrated in that volume. Same thing on the Nexus 10- $100 more for just 16GB additional storage which is really worth only $4. Either give us an SD slot *OR* include a lot more storage and without a huge penalty.

Carrying around a flash drive and cable is not practical but neither is storing 100% of a large music collection, photos, videos, and large games on a phone at all times when there are ample options for saving that to the cloud and only storing what you would reasonably locally. You wouldn't need to shuffle "all your music, photos, videos, and large games" each day, beacause with a combination of storage and streaming you can have access to most if not all of your desired content at any given time. Pinning and unpinning music in Google Music or Spotify while on Wifi is as easy as managing a playlist, and you don't have to eat up 10+ GB of storage space with hundreds of music files that would be impossible for you to listen to all in one day. Saving to local storage and streaming from the cloud is not an all or nothing proposition.

You are looking only at the physical cost of extra storage and not the associated costs of marketing, packaging, shipping and manufacturing, support, etc, for a different model. Calling it a ripoff would imply that you are being cheated out of your money because of an absurdly high profit margin, and this is not the case with either the 8GB or the 16GB version.

Another scenario is you have 1-2 GB free from the 8 Gb, but go on a trip and record a lot of videos which takes tons of space, you could upload it to the cloud, but that requires a fast connection or wait for wifi hotspot during the trip. Only the Tmobile plan is unlimited 4G speeds, everything else is limited.

3G/4G where I am is still not where it needs to be to make cloud use possible. I have trouble sending whatsapp messages when it's bad, much less stream HD video on a subway underground. And it's times when I lose connectivity that I fall back to watching videos/listening to music instead of surfing the web or facebook. If even that option is taken away, then my phone will just be a feature phone, Nexus or not.

3G/4G where I am is still not where it needs to be to make cloud use possible. I have trouble sending whatsapp messages when it's bad, much less stream HD video on a subway underground. And it's times when I lose connectivity that I fall back to watching videos/listening to music instead of surfing the web or facebook. If even that option is taken away, then my phone will just be a feature phone, Nexus or not.

I'm amazed at how many people are completely missing the point of this article. Jerry isn't wrong when he says 8GB is enough for him. And Alex isn't wrong when he says that 8GB isn't enough for him. The whole point is that everyone's needs are different. If you dismiss the 8GB version and say there's no reason for it to exist, all you're saying is that everyone should be forced to buy what you think they should want.

I've had a 32GB Galaxy Nexus since day one. I've never used even 8GB of its storage. I do have unlimited data, but I very rarely go over 2GB per month. For me, 8GB would probably be enough.

But I don't pretend that everyone else's usage patterns are the same as mine. If Google were offering *only* the 8GB version, I'd agree that that would not be enough. Having it as an option, though? Especially at that price? What possible down side is there to that?

I'm in exactly the same boat as you. I have never been under 27GB of free storage space on my Gnex, nor have I ever even come close to 2GB on my unlimited plan. There's other people out there in the same situation, why should people who don't need the extra space be forced to pay the extra price for it? If there were only 32 and 64GB options the phone would be an extra $100-150, not a fair price for people who don't need those options.

I think the bigger issue most people are getting vocal about is the feeling that Google is trying to "encourage" all the device makers to supply relatively small storage in an effort to maximize the use of Google services.

Totally understandable from a business perspective, but still a dick move from a customer perspective.

-Suntan

Its not a dick move, its a business move. Its sad that you some of guys believe these companies care about you. This phone is omen of whats to to come.

Two problems

A) I don't have unlimited data. I share a gig between three phones on our family plan.

B) As a Canadian I don't have access to Google Music

I can see how 8gb would be acceptable for your situation though.

I agree. 8 GB phones have a place for some people. But I have 11 GB left on my 16 GB Nexus 7, which means that a 4gb Nexus also has a place for some people (me apparently). Saying it has a place means nothing IMO. It doesnt seem practical to sell an 8gb version and not a 32 gb version. Sure, if they had an 8 AND 32 gb version people wouldnt complain (i could care less about a 32 gb version, 16 is fine for me). But they didnt do that. They chose 8gb over 32gb. And from the look of the crowd I'd say 32gb was more demanding then 8. But maybe Google did their homework and knew that a lot of people wanted an 8gb version. I doubt it, since I never heard anyone asking for phones to come with LESS memory to make it cheaper (how many iPhone owners said "I'd rather an 8gb iPhone for $150")? But that is just my 2 cents...

I was also mad when I saw the reports for an 8gb version but then I saw the price and I think this is google making a statement against the carriers......and I love it! There is no perfect device and we all think we know what it takes to make this one device that everyone would love. I don't know why Google didn't make a 32gb version but I would like to believe they have a good reason they probably can't share. This device is perfect for people like me on walmart family mobile that got tired of paying Sprint 2ce the amount I pay now. This phone will cause more people to evaluate non contract options like straight talk and may help start to break the stranglehold that the big carriers have over the wireless industry.

This phone is basically a big FU to the carriers and google is definitely taking a large hit to make this statement. My advice to everyone, take a look at non contact option........it may just save you a ton of money. My only regret was not leaving Sprint sooner

I love the 2 articles taking a different positions. Makes it interesting. Great to have both options. Now just offer a 32GB and most people would stop complaining about that and move on to no SD card and no removable battery.

Great case made for the 8gb nexus 4. I also bought an 8gb nexus 7 and i still have 5.21gb of free space. I have 4-6 games installed (gta3 is one of them), google music with 10 albums cashed and the last 50 photos added to my dropbox. I am rooted and have titanium backups of more games but they're just in my dropbox as well.

well i think Google should find a way of offering free or at least non-profit, reliable data to android users and then expect us to use the cloud.
surely its do-able technicaly??
its in googles interest for us to use the internet, its their bread+butter learning and selling our little habits.
i dont care what google know about me.. ill pull my pants down for them if they give me free fast data :)

Yeah, makes sense, let's use spotty mobile internet and drain the battery significantly faster, also heat up the temperature of the phone when wanting to listen to music. Because, ya know, on-board storage is so horrible it must be banished.

There is a few I use subsonic, you host it off a home computer or gigapros has a setup for ten dollars a month for 100gbs, extra bonus you can share with friends and give them logo s and they can upload their ow to share

I love the hate, I can't live in the cloud I do t have unlimited data, neither do I five gbs of full speed then throttled after that and not once ever did I go "Gosh darn cloud ". Or even better I don't get service where I live and work, then why in the hell are you paying for it.

I keep my music on my privately hosted music server I stream most of it. Otherwise I keep four or five albums in rotation to keep things from stale.

Podcasts how can I say this if you don't have time to listen to shows you missed then your trying to hard. I have beyond pod set to only keep three episodes for each podcasts and it syncs ten shows in total. Still not an issue.

For the crack flasher that need all that space for all your favorite devs cherry pick aosp Roms, you guys need help

Well said. I agree, with the advent of Dropbox, Google Drive, Pandora, Google Play Music/Movies/TV/Books/Magazines and others, plus the fact I have a Nexus7, I couldn't ask for more space.

I plan on using my N7 for tegra3 gaming and reading; I plan on using the N4 for things like Humble Bundle games, Streaming musing in my car, facebook/google+, and other stuff.

I love they gave me that option!

(My N7 is 8GB too!)

I'm pretty sure this will support USB host, so you could always just buy:
2x 32gb Cruzer Fit USB drives (http://goo.gl/WbGST ~$22 apiece on amazon) and a USB to microUSB adapter (http://goo.gl/QT4Ti ~$1) and have enough left over to buy a subway sandwich to eat while your flash drives fill with 8x more music/movies than you could have put on the extra internal storage.

I also have 11Gb left on my Gnex but, that's because I'm being careful and don't want to fill it up too fast LOL!!! I'm actaully starting to get used to using Google music for storage and streaming and I guess that's what Google wants.

I also hardly ever root pure Google devices although it's easy to do, so I don't have to worry about a bucnh of Nandroid backups. When I had the S3 the extra storage was nice because I don't like touchwiz so I had to root it and install custome roms. Having said all that it still would be nice to have the extra storage.

Personally, I'm ok with 16GB but 8 won't do. However, Jerry, I'm more interested in a full review of the Nexus 4 done by you. Please include extensive testing of its camera and battery life. I'm not trying to flatter but your honest opinion on this device is all I need. Many thanks in advance.

Jerry the lengths you've gone to justify the Nexus 4 8gb...:-)
They should have simply included a Microsd slot and we'd all be happy.
I'm from a part of Europe where there is no Netflix, Hulu or other well known streaming services. Also, when I travel it's usually abroad, so I'm roaming, we all know data is expensive when roaming. Europe isn't yet fully ready for the mobile cloud. What's more, the steaming services we have, don't even work when roaming, because they are tied to the home network. It's a big mess. There are simply too many legislative (DRM) hurdles for mobile cloud computing in Europe.
So, microSD or 32/64gb storage are a much more convenient option in Europe.

i see Jerry's point and his is made with the benefit of where he lives and what is available to him. on the other hand i live 30 miles from Glasgow in the UK. where i live i can only get 3g on a weak signal from tmobile/EE. the signal is hspa and the speed when i'm lucky is 1mb up and down.
despite announcements of 4g etc. etc. the facts are i won't see those speeds for years to come.my other provider is vodafone and its a 2g connection and when asked about when they were upgrading the network i was told they had no immediate plans for my area.30 miles from a major UK city we're still on 2g so yes i need a bit more than 8gb and given the terrain where i live there are many dead spots with no signal from any provider.be thankful if you can live in the clouds the only clouds i have bring rain.

I have a 16 gig galaxy note and it is 100% full of space, i have an 8 gig card and its also completely full.

just photos from the 8mp camera take about 3.5mb each.

some android games take up 600mb per game and MANY take up 30-50mb.

16 gigs is barely enough.

8 gigs is just a joke.

I love what Google did by offering only 8/16gb local storage. It shows us how we can move toward a better future by having more speed and more internet coverage. After all, it is a cloud based company. The only way to go is, up :-)

If Google can give me unlimited data with a connection that is always good enough to use for streaming music and video, I'd be fine with an 8GB phone. Unfortunately I live in the real world, so I'll stick with my 32GB phone.

Why is it every jackass who doesn't use a lot of space gets preachy and tries to tell everyone that does how wrong they are. I have a galaxy note with 16 gigs of space and a 32 gig microsd. I have between 3-4 gigs free on both the phone and the sd card. Not everyone wants to be raped by the carriers for overage charges and put their things at the mercy of others. The cloud would have been real useful last night when my cell service went out during the hurricane. Sorry, but Google can suck it for trying to force everyone to do things their way on all of their products. Thats why I don't use chrome and it's crappy interface on my computer, and that's why I will likely never buy a nexus device.

Counterpoint:

Why is it every jackass who does use a lot of space gets preachy and tries to tell everyone who doesn't how wrong they are? I have a galaxy s 3 with 16 gigs and no microsd card - and I *think* I've got 12 gigs or so free (it must not be a big problem FOR ME because I don't even know). Not everyone is getting raped by the carriers for overage charges. No hurricanes here (although I will grant you that T-Mo service isn't exactly great in many instances), and I have wifi or data most everywhere I go. I use Google Music all the time, whether I'm at the gym or elsewhere - and it sometimes goes out, but most of the time I can pull it down. Heck, I use iTunes Match on my iPad, and that's generally just as useful. I'll pull down some local for travel, and have done so at airports on more than one occasion (owing to poor planning and forgetfulness of my cloud-dependence). I guess you ought to be saying every OS provider can suck it for trying to force everyone to do things their way on all their products (Apple much?). Personally, I LOVE Chrome (if you mean the browser, not really sure), and I have owned every Nexus device (including the Xoom, which sucks donkey balls compared to any iPad I've also owned). Hell, I was about to switch back over to the iPhone - but the Nexus 4 and the price have swayed me back.

This brings up another issue with all the shouting about "NO LTE THIS and STORAGE THAT!!1!!" - do you (the general you, not specific) get the price level? Show me where you can get an off-contract smartphone at these prices w/specs that are comparable... please, I'm begging you. A just-released phone with an SOC that's in what, 1 other (Optimus G), a screen that's (apparently) on par with the best on the market, 2 GB of RAM, and on for either $299 or $349 - and you're bitching about LTE and storage? Let me draw you back to the price (one reference - an off-contract galaxy s 2, that's right - 2, is still $499). I personally think it's ridiculous, but I happen to embrace the cloud, and not everybody does.

I have LTE on my iPAD, and it. is. awesome. - there's no question about it - but I have to say that I honestly couldn't care any less with this. This is MY use case, I'm not saying it applies to anybody but me, but I'm having a hard time understanding the flaming here. T-Mobile (and many other providers for that matter) doesn't even have LTE, so in many instances, it's a moot point. Would I like it, sure I would (if I could use it), but it's absolutely not a dealbreaker FOR ME.

TL;DR - it's significantly cheaper than phones that are flagships of yesteryear even, that are still sold. I embrace the cloud and haven't found a need for the storage, and I think HSPA+ will suit the current majority, while it's not LTE and I freely admit that. So for MY USE CASE, it's great, and the price is unreal when you consider that the GNex got there like 8 months after release. This hullabaloo is therefore confusing TO ME. That's not to diminish others' concerns - I just find it funny to see the bashing from the side who DOES want the storage, as if the LULZ IDIOTZ is only coming from the cloud side, when frankly, it seems to be harshest from the side I'm presently responding to.

I personally don't know how I shouldn't consider going to a StraightTalk $45 unlimited plan using this phone. I'm on Sprint now and getting basically crap for much more.

"Why spend an extra $50 and still not have enough space on your smartphone when it comes with Google's cloud?" Because when you travel outside of a metropolitan 3G/4G area (as I do regularly), storage does become an issue. Heck even on the craptacular T-Mobile network around RTP, I lose all reception inside the city. Cloud doesn't do diddly for you in those circumstances. $50 for more storage (which you can use for years; that movie date or month's service fees are ephemeral) is a good deal.

You asked: "Why spend an extra $50 and still not have enough space on your smartphone when it comes with Google's cloud?"

Because the cloud can't store everything that you need and unlimited data plans almost don't exist anymore! And I'm sure all of the comments above mine outlined other reasons why pretty well. I thought an 8GB Nexus 7 would be enough. But then I got NOVA3. How exactly should I store the data files in the cloud? Or Bard's Tale. Or Dark Knight Rises. Or Modern Combat 3. I can't even have TWO of those on my device at the same time - and I own them all!!

THAT IS WHY 8GB/16GB ISN'T ENOUGH.

Sorry, i got to call out the people being hypocrites, you know if apple was doing the same thing google doing with the nexus , alot of you here would be making fun of apple and calling them crap, not everyone want/can use they have club services, either bece limited data or they are people that travel on planes a lot

Ummm first, I'm pretty sure a Verizon version is coming in a few months. Google just decided not to promote it because of what happened with the Verizon gnex delay.

Also if u notice, the nexus7 was released with 8 and 16 gig. Four months later or so they dropped the 8 and added the 32. So if 16 is not enough for you, be patient :)

Finally hspa+ on att gets 3 to 6 megs on avg. With T-Mobile u will get 8+ topping out around 16 to 20.... so the speeds are.very respectable though nothing like lte which is usually 10+ topping out around 30 or 40.

As other people have said, but perhaps a bit more eloquently, Jerry, you're f'ing wrong. And ignorant. Sure, if everyone is on a carrier with fully unlimited data, with great coverage, or always near available WiFi, then sure, 8GB may be enough to just use "the cloud" (and damn how I hate that retarded term...they're servers, just like they were 5 years ago.) With more and more carriers getting rid of their unlimited data plans, and T-Mobile being the only national carrier I know of that still has unlimited data (because they know they would take a pretty big hit if they dropped it), Google needs to stop trying to force people to use "the cloud" for everything, unless if they're going to work out deals with all the carriers to subsidize our data plans or something. As it is, for those of us still grandfathered into data plans on Verizon, we'll have to pay full price for our new phones going forward, and keep paying our full bills. Thanks Google. How about if you get your heads out of your asses and start including SD card slots? Just about every other phone out there has them, except Nexus phones.

You are one angry man. An informed tech-writer(especially informed on *his own* needs) shares his experience, as well as what other people have found to be true-yet somehow, he's "wrong".

I call B.S. on 125 days worth of google music.
I have 3700 songs at about 9 days.
125 days / 9 days = 13.8
3700 * 13.8 = 51,000 songs
How can one pretend to recognize and enjoy all 51,000 songs?

Okay 58,000. Not being able to recognize and identify every one was my entire point.

Glad you got part of it anyway.

This is actually quite simple when you buy/download whole albums instead of song by song.

When I was in college, I did song by song-and had 8 days worth of music.

As I got older if I heard a song that I liked, I would download the entire album (I have an eclectic taste in music-I listen to EVERYTHING). Mix into that music collections that I have from friends, and I'm a few thousand songs short of Jerry.

I haven't taken advantage of the cloud just yet, but I will very soon. Until then, I have everything stored on an external hard drive. Every month or so (when I want something new), I just update my music. It's an old system, but it works for me.

Plus I still think 8GB would be good for the average person.

I know a good amount of people who still use iPods for music and movies, so that they don't waste phone battery. Maybe an even more modern example would be the PLENTY of people who have media stored on their tablets, and not their phones.

8GB could still work for a lot of people. It all depends on how one uses his/her phone. If I were in the market for a phone, I'd do the 8GB Nexus 4 without any question, worry, or problem. But I'm quite satisfied with my HTC One S, and don't feel any need to change.

How about $350 gets you 64GB? A 64GB Sandisk class 10 card is about 60$ on amazon.
Or a uSD slot? 8GB isn't enough space and 50$ for another 8GB costs to much.

There are lots of reasons why 8 and 16gb aren't enough storage space and most boil down to choice. If Android is the OS of choice then there should be more fixed storage or a uSD slot.

This is fine for a tech guy, but if we are being honest, Play Music is one of the worst music apps for Android. Dropbox is terrible for anything but single files and how many people get burned for having "photos" on social media? If Google got there apps in gear, unified all this stuff with one "Drive" folder on your computer, and actually made a descent app for phones, I'll say 8GB is enough. Until then, I'll take my 80GB's and never have to sync my phone, or worry about cell signal.

Lets be honest, Play music plays music, Google drive work fine for backing up your pics. What more do you need

I'm a bit late but I'll chime in. I'm glad that you're ok with 8GB. But are you glad I'm not?

No one is saying the 8GB shouldn't exist. But what we are saying is whatever happened to choice? People don't bitch about their iPhone running out of space because people that would have run out on 8 or 16GB bought a larger one.

All the rest of us want is an 8/16/32 and possibly 64GB option. I don't see what's so bad about choice. We will pay for it. If 8GB works for you, cool, it doesn't work for me and my needing a 32GB phone doesn't mean you can't have your 8GB either.

Until Google music's app stops sucking and until network speeds stop sucking and when networks stop capping data, just give people like me an option to buy more space.

I don't understand how any true Android enthusiast can get buy with just 8GB of internal storage

My Samsung Galaxy S III has 16GB (12.8 usable) of internal storage. I have hundreds of apps (don't all geeks?). As of this moment, I only have 1.44GB of free space internally available.

I have a 64GB microSD card for everything else (music, photos, video, etc). I've used about 20GB of that (so far).

USB OTG is a usable alternative, but it's not like 32gb sd memory is incredibly expensive.
I myself would rather have 32gb onboard, which in my experience is enough for me.

I know google is all about the cloud, but who do they really sell these nexus phones to? not the average smartphone buyer. IT'S androidcentral fans and technology addicts and the vast majority of us want more than 16gb, and 8 gb is just a joke for a modern smartphone.
I can accept life without a sd card, but give us an option for 32gb. I'd be glad to pay $399 for it, cause I know they sell these phones are sold at a low margin and they have to scrimp where they can to read the low introductory prices for these devices.

well since jerry dont need more space for data no one does then. im glad us americans have a voice to speak for us. go be a dictator elsewhere jerry.

Good point. When you have Dropbox, Box, Google, and Amazon storage available, Why pay for an extra 8 gigs. I have a PogoPlug with a couple TB drives hooked up at home. With the app, I can play or view anything on those drives, including movies after it optimizes them.

this POS doesn't support USB OTG and i doubt the hardware supports it because fcuking GOOGLE want you to use their fcuking CLOUD!!! FK GOOGLE AND FK CLOUD!!!

Some people obviously don't listen to much music... I have a 60GB library, and with my 16GB iPhone 4 right now I'm finding myself always wishing for more space to put more music.

I would get this but I still don't see the need for a tablet when I already do almost everything on my phone.If I.could get the 7 right now I would as an impulse buy to play with jelly bean but I don't see it as anything more than a giant phone like the ipad.
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