When you buy a tablet for your child, one of the things to check is the available memory. Tablets come with a certain amount of internal memory, and many will also take a micro SD card as well, which allows the memory to be expanded. However, this doesn’t tell the whole story.
A tablet that has double the memory, for example a 16 gigabyte (GB) tablet such as the Sprout Channel Cubby, of an 8GB tablet such as the iRulu BabyPad Y1, actually has, in real terms, more than double the available memory.
All tablets come with certain software already installed. This includes the operating system but also built-in apps, such as games, Google Play, parental controls and other software. All this takes up a portion of the available internal memory. For an 8 or 16GB tablet, this might easily take up 4GB of the memory.
In addition, although memory can be expanded using a memory card, not everything can be stored on the card. They are great for storing photos and videos, but adding extra apps will require the use of at least some of the internal memory. Some apps can have a portion, but not all, of this usage transferred to the SD card; other apps can only be installed on the internal memory. Apps that come bundled with the product usually can’t be completely uninstalled either – even if they are never used.
What this all means is that a 16GB tablet actually has much more than double the useable memory of an 8GB tablet. If the pre-installed software and bundled apps on the 8GB tablet take up 3GB of internal memory, and those on the 16GB tablet take up a larger 5GB, this means that the smaller tablet has only 5GB of, often essential for installing new apps, internal memory left over for the owner’s use. By comparison, the 16GB tablet has 11GB of memory left, which is more than double. And this assumes that the 16GB tablet comes with more pre-installed software.
If they both were to have 4GB of internal memory pre-used, the 8GB tablet would only have 4GB left whilst the 16GB tablet would have 12GB left, which is triple, not double. A 16GB tablet provides a greater degree of flexibility than might be thought simply from the specs.