Today I regretted having only 2 GB on my Shuffle, because it meant I could not store the three most recent episodes of my favorite podcasts; but so far I have never used the full 16 GB on my 2nd Generation iPod Touch.

Now I am looking at replacing the iPod Touch and a very early Android cellphone with an iPhone 4S. The contract will be $1680 over two years, so the $200 cost difference between the 16GB and 64GB model verges on negligible; but I care; I could get the small size and donate $200 to pancreatic cancer research.

What are people doing with the second 16 or 48GB of storage on their iPhones? Movies? Whole music collections? DOS emulators?

Presumably people who have 16GB iPhones made that capacity choice based on what they thought their needs would be. For those who subsequently discovered that 16GB was not always enough, what were the circumstances?

First-hand answers are more useful than second-hand, though if you have a friend, colleague, or family member who frequently berates him or herself for being stingy with memory, the details would be useful too.

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    This doesn't look like a question with a right answer.
    – Daniel
    Commented Oct 9, 2011 at 4:45
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    Some people load iTunes movies and TV shows on their devices. Others have 100+ GB music libraries. Still others have 100's of games (some can require up to a GB of space each). And still others take tons of pictures and videos with their devices. People vary greatly and so do their habits. Buy a device that fits your lifestyle.
    – user10355
    Commented Oct 9, 2011 at 5:49
  • "iMovie on a long trip" is a right answer. Commented Oct 9, 2011 at 6:46
  • @Daniel, the original wording of the question was "When have you regretted having only 16GB," what definitely has right answers. The rephrasing is a bit anodyne for my taste and may encourage banality. Commented Oct 9, 2011 at 6:49
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    @cksum, I know what habits I have given the tools I am using now, but that is a poor substitute for the real-world experience of people using different tools. The question is emphatically not whether 16 GB is enough for you or anyone. The question, before it was changed, was for field reports from current owners of a 16GB iPhone who had ever felt regret that they had only 16GB. I am confidant that I know with 98% likelihood the answer to "does a minimalist require more than 16GB?" so I would not ask. Commented Oct 9, 2011 at 22:21

1 Answer 1


Video Capture, more photos, larger image sensor and better camera on the iPhone 4S means I'll spring for 32. Even with iCloud and all the music streaming options, I find I always want 4 GB of core music (and another 2.5 of podcasts) with me. Having room for more serious app and book (PDF) storage will be very nice.

The 14 GB iPhone 4 I've used since it launched was sufficient except for maybe a handful of times where I wanted more space. Especially when using iMovie to assemble slide shows and short video updates on a longer trip. Also, if an apple keynote or other hour long video comes out, I don't have the space to accommodate such videos.

enter image description here enter image description here Those are the few times when "the 16" wasn't enough for me. I now don't take several databases with me using bento and filemaker pro since I want more space for songs and camera footage.

I initially thought of a white 32 iPod Touch and the smallest black 4S - but having all the space and speed in one package makes it more of a computer to me. I can grab a bluetooth keyboard and get short work done if needed. I'm also quite eager for AirPlay and a 4S.

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    That's exactly the kind of answer I was seeking. The 2nd Generation iPod Touch has no camera; the only content I have added to it directly is the occasional app download and WFMU radio archive. Thanks for the use case. Commented Oct 9, 2011 at 6:54

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