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Old Nov 20, 2012, 11:53 PM   #1
bniu
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Is this why iPad is still at 64GB?

The first iPad had 2x32GB chips. Then each subsequent iPad has been capped at 64GB. Looking at an ifixit teardown, it looked like to me there is now only space for one chip. Is it true that iPads now use just a single flash chip instead of 2?

If this is true, does anyone know when 128GB chips will become common?
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 12:16 AM   #2
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I think that it's because the retina screen requires a much bigger battery (compare iPad 2 battery vs iPad 3/4) to retain the amazing 10-hour+ battery life so the motherboard has to be shrunken to the smallest. Also, more importantly, to further increase the insane profit margin Apple has on storage.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 07:05 AM   #3
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are you using more than 60Gb? I just don't see the market asking for 128Gb
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 07:25 AM   #4
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The reason is simple, you would be hard pressed to find NAND chips with a higher capacity than 32 GB.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 07:30 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by w00tini View Post
I just don't see the market asking for 128Gb
The people who don't want to burn expensive cellular minutes downloading stuff over and over from the cloud that could be synched once on their device. Sometimes finding some free, robust wifi is not easy. Apple sold many millions of iPod generations by simply growing hard drive sizes from version to version. Some people want to carry up to ALL of their media around with them.

But companies like AT&T, Verizon, etc love the way you are thinking and hope we'll all embrace the cloud. Their data tiers are revenue nirvana vs. the "just store it all in the cloud" mentality. And Apple can start stripping storage out of such devices (but leave the prices the same of course) if the crowd comes around to your way of thinking too. AT&T, Verizon, etc will be very happy with us burning through cell tiers to pay them more and Apple will love the added profit per unit sold. We'll just be poorer as our hard-earned money flows away so that we can download the same files over and over again because we don't have enough local storage to just have them on board.

Obviously, I'm with the crowd that wants >64GB of storage. I'd much rather sync and have it anywhere/anytime rather than stream it from the cloud and burn cell minutes or wait for it via sometimes slow "free" wifi.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pressure View Post
The reason is simple, you would be hard pressed to find NAND chips with a higher capacity than 32 GB.
What?
http://www.sandisk.com/about-sandisk...h-memory-chip/
http://www.xbitlabs.com/news/memory/...d_Tablets.html
http://www.toshiba.com/taec/Catalog/...amilyid=900116
http://newsroom.intel.com/community/...64gb-20nm-nand

I think it may be harder to find some NAND manufacturer that is NOT making NAND greater than 32GB.

Last edited by HobeSoundDarryl; Nov 21, 2012 at 08:01 AM.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:04 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by w00tini View Post
iCloud, Dropbox, SugarSync, ect...

are you using more than 60Gb? I just don't see the market asking for 128Gb
I could go for 128GB. I listen to a lot of music (I currently have 35GB of it on my iPhone) and am not around wifi I can stream with during the day and I don't have unlimited data. In five months, $20/month for the next tier data would pay for the higher capacity iPad.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:08 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by w00tini View Post
iCloud, Dropbox, SugarSync, ect...

are you using more than 60Gb? I just don't see the market asking for 128Gb
Yep, I'm at 61GB here. Just because you don't need a feature doesn't mean that no one does. There is clearly demand for more storage even in the era of cloud services. Until cellular data is cheap and unlimited, there will be a demand for storage.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:16 AM   #8
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Yep, I'm at 61GB here. Just because you don't need a feature doesn't mean that no one does. There is clearly demand for more storage even in the era of cloud services. Until cellular data is cheap and unlimited, there will be a demand for storage.
We fly a lot, and my life likes watching TV shows and movies on her iPad2, and I'm constantly deleting things to fit new stuff for her to watch, though sometimes she likes going back to the old shows as well. Would definitely buy a 128 for the next upgrade.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:23 AM   #9
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I can see the regular iPad getting 32/64/128 and the Mini staying at 16/32/64.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:37 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by w00tini View Post
iCloud, Dropbox, SugarSync, ect...

are you using more than 60Gb? I just don't see the market asking for 128Gb
Wasn't there already an iPod with 128GB at some point? That was a few years ago if IIRC.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 08:46 AM   #11
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Wasn't there already an iPod with 128GB at some point? That was a few years ago if IIRC.
At one point it shot up to 240GB but its back down to 160GB, the difference being that the iPod uses regular harddrives which are much less expensive. The Pads and Touch use flash storage so its more expensive to get really high capacities.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:05 AM   #12
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Just because you don't need a feature doesn't mean that no one does.
You've been an MR member long enough to know better. The people who know more than Apple also know what's best for everyone. As I type, these people are composing The Affordable iDevice Act of 2012 and preparing their résumé to become the first Secretary of Business.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:26 AM   #13
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I suspect it's as simple as a diminishing profit margin once they go above 64GB when they're charging $100 more for each doubling of storage (to keep the pricing simple and the profits tasty).

I'm sure at some point it will make sense for Apple to bump the capacities to 32/64/128 though.

If you like storing video on your iPad, 64GB will soon run out. It's a shame Apple don't officially support external storage for iPads, even if only for video apps. There is the work-around through the camera connection kit, but that is hardly elegant.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:38 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by darngooddesign View Post
At one point it shot up to 240GB but its back down to 160GB, the difference being that the iPod uses regular harddrives which are much less expensive. The Pads and Touch use flash storage so its more expensive to get really high capacities.
If you look at the pricing trend of 16-32-64 from iHS's summary: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2401725,00.asp it appears that each iteration costs about double the previous iteration, implying that 128GB would cost around $134 vs. $67 for 64GB. Of course, that's nearly pure speculation on my part as I'm perceiving a price pattern based upon only a single example. Maybe 128GB would cost much more OR much less than that?

Of course, another option for those hungry to carry a bit more on board would be to build in a SDXC card slot (which would also be handy for photographers and videographers). This could be done similar to how the sim slot is done so that there is a flush fit when the card is installed. Then, those of us wanting to optionally tote a bit more data could just add 128GB (for about $100 as I write this) or 64GB (for about $40) or less (for cheaper). Then, we would have upwards of 192GB or 128GB iDevices instead of capping them at 64GB. One little slot and we could add just about whatever storage we want to our iDevices AND expand their on-board storage as our needs evolve over time.

But who wants optional big storage expandability in their iDevices?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Porco View Post
If you like storing video on your iPad, 64GB will soon run out. It's a shame Apple don't officially support external storage for iPads, even if only for video apps. There is the work-around through the camera connection kit, but that is hardly elegant.
While also not elegant, there's also those wifi-enabled hard drives. But I'd much rather have the storage on-board rather than carry another extra thing around.

Last edited by HobeSoundDarryl; Nov 21, 2012 at 09:44 AM.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:39 AM   #15
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If they made a 128gb ipad i would probably upgrade from my ipad 2 just for that, same reason why i upgrade from my iphone 4 to the 64gb 4s.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:43 AM   #16
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If you look at the pricing trend of 16-32-64 from iHS's summary: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2401725,00.asp it appears that each iteration costs about double the previous iteration, implying that 128GB would cost around $134 vs. $67 for 64GB. Of course, that's nearly pure speculation as I'm identifying a price pattern based upon only a single example. Maybe 128GB would cost much more OR much less than that?
If the 128 costs as much as or a bit more than the $100 upgrade cost Apple may still do it by accepting that the higher profit margin on the more popular sizes covers the reduced profit margin on the top-tier iPads. I don't think they would do 128GB until they can get the chip for at least $100. I don't think that speculated cost of $134 accounts for savings Apple gets from buying in extreme bulk.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:49 AM   #17
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At one point it shot up to 240GB but its back down to 160GB, the difference being that the iPod uses regular harddrives which are much less expensive. The Pads and Touch use flash storage so its more expensive to get really high capacities.
Apple never made a 240GB iPod, although the drives exist and some have upgraded it themselves.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:53 AM   #18
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Right (darngooddesign). And in my quick look around, that tended to be the highest prices I saw for NAND. I found many other sites referencing lower prices for NAND but couldn't tell for certain that it was the type of NAND used for iDevices. Apple's reputation of driving hard bargains with component suppliers makes me completely agree with the belief that Apple could do better.

I wish they would roll out 128GB. As retina pushes more apps to include higher resolution graphics and as we go for 1080p video vs. 720p or less as our format of choice, the demand for on-board storage only grows one way. I never imagine LTE/3G pricing evolving to make the "cloud" THE option... except for those happy to give more and more money to the likes of AT&T, Verizon, etc.

I'd also love to see that memory slot option come along. It would be nice for those with even bigger storage wants to have a way to get what they want too. For us consumers, it looks like adding our own memory that way would be cheaper than Apple building in the NAND for us. And pricing on those memory cards seem to only go down over time.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:58 AM   #19
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Apple never made a 240GB iPod, although the drives exist and some have upgraded it themselves.
Orthopedic shoes... I stand corrected.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 10:37 AM   #20
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The reason is simple, you would be hard pressed to find NAND chips with a higher capacity than 32 GB.
Yep, that's why we also have to wait for at least another year before the iPhone gets a 128 GB model. (iPhones have only one chip, unlike the iPad and iPod touch which can do 2x32 GB for 64 GB models).

Last edited by ThatsMeRight; Dec 11, 2012 at 12:50 PM.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 10:45 AM   #21
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I've slammed into the 64GB limit several times. Between a healthy collection of apps, music, photos, and video (raw footage for editing on iPad) a 128GB option would be appreciated. I got the iPad 1 maxed out at 64GB; just picked up an iPad 4, and the max storage option is...64GB. That having been a distinct limitation 3 generations ago, I shudder to think how soon I'll slam into the wall again with "retina" resolutions, bigger apps, an ever-growing music collection, and more home videos to edit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HobeSoundDarryl View Post
I'd also love to see that memory slot option come along.
Don't see it happening. Swappable storage (be it for upgrades or transient media) requires several times the space of a fixed on-board IC. Consider the volume increase: take the bare essence of a Micro-SD device, then wrapped in user-resistant protective casing, add connector, slip that into an SD adapter, which then goes into a environment-resisting slot casing including a slight but relevant air gap, which uses SD-sized connector receptacle, in turn soldered onto the main board with a total footprint much larger than the actual storage IC you're trying to connect - for a device as compact as the iPad, that's a LOT of wasted volume, a lot of "low benefit per cubic millimeter". Yes, a slot would be nice - then again, we could stuff several 64GB flash chips in that space, or another processor, or more battery, giving much more bang for the buck.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 11:00 AM   #22
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I think cloud services will negate the need for big harddrives in the not too distant future.

For me, who uses Spotify and doesn't play a lot of games, I wish they did an 8GB iPad.

We may see a 128GB iPad next year, but after that local storage will get smaller.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 11:41 AM   #23
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...For me, who uses Spotify and doesn't play a lot of games, I wish they did an 8GB iPad.
What would you do if you weren't around WiFi for most of the day and didn't have unlimited data?
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 01:44 PM   #24
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Don't see it happening. Swappable storage (be it for upgrades or transient media) requires several times the space of a fixed on-board IC. Consider the volume increase: take the bare essence of a Micro-SD device, then wrapped in user-resistant protective casing, add connector, slip that into an SD adapter, which then goes into a environment-resisting slot casing including a slight but relevant air gap, which uses SD-sized connector receptacle, in turn soldered onto the main board with a total footprint much larger than the actual storage IC you're trying to connect - for a device as compact as the iPad, that's a LOT of wasted volume, a lot of "low benefit per cubic millimeter". Yes, a slot would be nice - then again, we could stuff several 64GB flash chips in that space, or another processor, or more battery, giving much more bang for the buck.
While I agree it isn't going to happen, I do notice that lots of other very small/thin devices seem to have found a way to fit all that inside. I'm sure Apple could pull it off if they were motivated without it hogging up as much space as implied.

As to "bang for the buck", for us consumers who desire more storage, it seems this would be a way to buy an iDevice and grow it's total storage as needed rather than buy the Apple-decided option and then bump into the wall. I know I've breathed a lot of new life/use into many computing & portable products over the years by being able to add storage.

Again, I'm confident it won't happen but offered it as another way to get there for those of us desiring more than 64GB without paying the Apple premium. If Apple decides it doesn't want to go there for the foreseeable future, they could cling to 64GB max while still giving a segment of the market what it wants.
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Old Nov 21, 2012, 02:24 PM   #25
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iCloud, Dropbox, SugarSync, ect...

are you using more than 60Gb? I just don't see the market asking for 128Gb
I've already had to remove all of my music from my iPad and I still regularly need to do a cull of apps to make space.

128gb could be the deciding factor in whether I upgrade to the iPad 5.
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