A note about tablet storage


Senior Member
Dec 28, 2010
Since quite a few people seem confused as to why their tablet is advertised as XX GiB storage, and then they only have ~200MiB for apps, I thought I would give a quick explanation.

Most of these devices have around 512MiB of NAND, or flash, storage. This is used for the system, cache, recovery, boot, userdata, misc, and a couple of other partitions.

The XX GiB reported in the specifications is usually some internal storage that is mounted to /nand or /sdcard. Even if mounted to /nand, this space is treated as your SD card by most applications. In fact, I've found that most apps ignore an external SD card completely. There are a few exceptions, but their usage of the external SD card is obvious, so I won't list any.

Hopefully this can help clear up some misconceptions concerning space. Also, this should serve as a reminder to watch how many apps you install and to uninstall anything you don't use since space is most likely pretty tight on the mtd partition mounted to /data (userdata@mtd).


Staff member
Sep 24, 2010
This is an excellent point. To give an analogy, when you buy a PC or a Mac with an Internal Drive of XX Gb, you understand that you immediately lose a portion of this space to the OS, then some for app storage, temp files, etc. Your tablet works exactly the same way.

This is why there is a lot of discussion by some more advanced users about apps like App2SD. This is an application that allows you to move your apps around from their default locations, because as l_n points out a lot of systems completely ignore the external SD.