I read an interesting post over on Engadget Mobile today about how Google has a plan to overcome Android’s 256 MB application storage limit. BlackBerry users are all too familiar with having virtually unlimited storage for media on removable micro SD cards but very little memory, 128 MB or less on most BlackBerry devices, to actually store and run applications from.
The issue isn’t quite as dire for Android users as it is for BlackBerry users. Only core application files need to reside within internal memory in Android. The BlackBerry, however, requires that entire applications be installed to internal memory.
Why does all this matter?
One of the big complaints about the BlackBerry, especially when compared to the iPhone, Android, and WebOS devices, is that applications don’t seem as feature rich or look as pretty as they do on other devices. This is because the more features you include in an application, the bigger the application gets. The more graphics, audio, and textures you add to an application, the bigger the application gets. There are some iPhone apps (games) that are bigger by themselves than the available application memory used for all applications in most BlackBerry devices.
What is RIM going to do about it?
Android, relatively speaking, has only be out a short while, and, even though the app storage limit issue is more of a nuisance than a showstopper, Google has a plan to resolve it. BlackBerry devices have had issues with too little application memory since the time that the first BlackBerry devices with color displays came out. It is a complete showstopper as far as creating big feature rich applications and one can only hope that this is something that RIM is working on.
I wouldn’t hold your breath waiting for RIM to fix this. Their attitude is the same as many of their users. Read BB forums and you will find many who think the BB is just fine, doesn’t need more memory or a better browser.
Although I believe that RIM will have to address this sooner rather than later, I’ll give you that some BlackBerry users are creatures of habit and don’t like change. You got the same complaints about bluetooth, removable memory, cameras, trackballs, wi-fi, touchscreens, and trackpads. 🙂
By the way Dunewood. All the newer blackberrys have 256mb of flash memory. I’m a professional and have 31 apps downloaded including epocrates which uses alot of space. i have 100mb of space remaining. To be honest i really dont use them all except for the main 5 i use everyday.
Just wanted to correct you.
I have all of the apps I need — and more. I use an alternative calendar/contact app, several news readers, two media players, a task manager, several utilities for BB, location services, Vlingo, Evernote, two twitter clients, three themes, facebook, and a weather service — plus others I can’t recall. And I still have 70+mb remaining.
I own a iPod Touch and was a Palm loyalist since the 300 — but I can’t envision giving up the Blackberry now that I have one.
For some with older devices it will remain an issue. I have a Storm and I am always battling memory usage. I do not see my corporation paying the money to upgrade me because I cant run apps….. So I would be very happy to have this issue resolved.
this should help http://aerize.com/blackberry/software/loader/
also I use “shrink-a-os” to strip away stuff from the operating system installed on my pc like voice activated dialing ect … stuff i dont use. After shrinking os 22.214.171.1241 and installing on my bold 9000 i had almost 50mb free
these both helped me overcome the 128mb limit
i hope this helps
If you strip away OS applications that you don’t use, something that normal users cannot do so I assume you are using an application to do that, don’t those end up going back on the next time you do an OS update and you have to remove them again? Just curious as that is something I have not tried to do before.
With the program Shrink-A-Os you need to install the OS on your pc like normal. From there you launch Shrink-A-Os point it to the directory where the OS is installed and then you can remove all kinds of applications games ect that you normally wouldn’t be able to deselect when loading the OS on to your phone. Personally i remove Voice Activated Dialing (who really uses that anyway?), Visual Voice Mail (Rogers doesnt support it anyway), Help files, OTA Upgrade, TTY for hearing impaired, Setup wizard, Icq, AIM, ect. to just name a few. You can strip themes, fonts, ringtones all kinds of stuff and the program can restore it all as well. All of these applications that I personally don’t use save a tone of space on your device’s internal memory. If a new version of OS comes out you will have to shrink that one as well before updating.
Oh btw the first link is to a program called Aerize Card Loader. This application allows you to install applications onto your memory card!
Thank you Mike. Good to know… I might try that! 🙂
Is it me or does the guy in the middle of that photo look like Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory?
Anyway, back to the topic in hand. The limited size of storage for RIM products is massive. It’s okay for people like us who are members of forums and discuss how to free up space etc – but your average user doesn’t want to have t to know secret codes so they can dump the log files etc. They want their phone to work and they want to personalise it with themes and apps etc. I’d say that at least 5/10 RIM owners have never even heard of the APP store!
If their RIM doesn’t work they get pissed and switch to iPhone or whatever they think has better apps and easier installation.
I have a storm 1 and I have very few apps – like 7 maybe and I have 19mb of space left in my memory! The problem with RIM is that they only listen to their users who are bothered to post to forums etc. So the people who a bit nerdy get their say but the people who want a phone that works get pushed to the side.
Said it once and I’ll say it again. RIM are terrible pieces of kit. I hate my Storm with a passion and soon as I can get a new handset I’ll get one. Everyone who asks/says to me they’re getting a BB I tell them under no circumstances should they get a BB!
Not everyone needs an iPhone/Android and not everyone needs a Blackberry. I have some applications and games that I play on my Tour, but that is not the primary reason I have a Tour. I love/need my email. I need it to work beyond everything else that my smartphone will do for me. Checking the Deal of the Day with the Amazon application is nice, but that isn’t why I have a Blackberry.
If games, applications, a virtual keyboard (etc etc) are more important to an individual than push email, BB Messenger, and other BB functions then by all means someone should look at Android and iPhone.
My personal opinion is that BB phones do something better that the others don’t. It does the things that I need better. What I need isn’t what everyone else needs so it is great that we have so many options! 🙂
I understand the problems you guys are going through, with the small memory but if you want bigger memory then get a new Blackberry. If you dont want a Blackberry just get a different phone. Im not bustin balls here. I just dont understand why you guys are complaining. RIM isnt going to fix ur phones. they have new phones that have corrected the issues. im sure the next BB model will increase to 512mb.
The constant refrain of its not a problem are absurd. Its is simply bad OS design to constrain your apps to a limited arbitrary section of memory. It takes us back to the awful days of dos and the 640 k limit.
A particular problem is the insistence that attachments and emails are stored in the flash as well as the apps. On my newish 9000 I regularly hit memory problems.
The problem isn’t with the quantity of flash its with the os and its file structure.