Are the amount of RAM, processor cores, and screen resolution really deal-breakers?

0000757

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Dec 16, 2011
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I think when people say that "xGB of RAM is REQUIRED" or "I won't buy this phone unless it has 1080p resolution", or the fact that many Android makers and supporters advertise that their phones are better because of higher technical specs that it's a little unfair. However, is that something that actually matters?

For example, comparing my mom's iPhone 5C (1136x640) to my Moto X (1280x720), there's really no increase on my phone's screen. In fact in some cases the iPhone looks even better.

Or take the processor. There are Android phones pushing 2.0GHz Quad-Core and even Octo-Core devices from Samsung, and phones pushing 3-4GB of RAM, yet the iPhone is still able to stay just as smooth and fluid as those phones. Even my Moto X, which is a 1.7GHz Dual Core with 2GB of RAM *still* keeps up with phones like the GS5 in gaming performance and every day tasks. In fact sometimes my Moto X is even faster because it's not having its resources hogged by OEM skins.

Again lets look at the camera. My Moto X has a 10MP camera that does GREAT outdoor shots and the videos look amazing, but comparing indoor shots with the iPhone 5S or front-facing shots the iPhone 5S wins, despite lower MP on both cameras. The MP count really doesn't even have an effect on camera quality yet manufacturers and fanboys use it as a point to make their phone better than the competitor.

Of course your raw technical specifications do matter, and in a data processing trial and raw hardware performance all these high-end Android devices would definitely outclass the iPhone and iPad, but when you look at the devices realistically, is that actually something that matters? I don't think it does, with the iPhone 5/S and iPad Air/Mini 2 being proof that specs are only one part and that your software matters more.

What about you all? Do specs prevent you from looking at a phone? Would you refuse to buy an iPhone 6 because of its specs?
 
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SMIDG3T

Suspended
Apr 29, 2012
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I think when people say that "xGB of RAM is REQUIRED" or "I won't buy this phone unless it has 1080p resolution", or the fact that many Android makers and supporters advertise that their phones are better because of higher technical specs that it's a little unfair. However, is that something that actually matters?

For example, comparing my mom's iPhone 5C (1136x640) to my Moto X (1280x720), there's really no increase on my phone's screen. In fact in some cases the iPhone looks even better.

Or take the processor. There are Android phones pushing 2.0GHz Quad-Core and even Octo-Core devices from Samsung, and phones pushing 3-4GB of RAM, yet the iPhone is still able to stay just as smooth and fluid as those phones. Even my Moto X, which is a 1.7GHz Dual Core with 2GB of RAM *still* keeps up with phones like the GS5 in gaming performance and every day tasks. In fact sometimes my Moto X is even faster because it's not having its resources hogged by OEM skins.

Again lets look at the camera. My Moto X has a 10MP camera that does GREAT outdoor shots and the videos look amazing, but comparing indoor shots with the iPhone 5S or front-facing shots the iPhone 5S wins, despite lower MP on both cameras. The MP count really doesn't even have an effect on camera quality yet manufacturers and fanboys use it as a point to make their phone better than the competitor.

Of course your raw technical specifications do matter, and in a data processing trial and raw hardware performance all these high-end Android devices would definitely outclass the iPhone and iPad, but when you look at the devices realistically, is that actually something that matters? I don't think it does, with the iPhone 5/S and iPad Air/Mini 2 being proof that specs are only one part and that your software matters more.

What about you all? Do specs prevent you from looking at a phone? Would you refuse to buy an iPhone 6 because of its specs?
Let's be honest, the iPhone 6 will probably still have 1GB of RAM (I do hope for 2GB deep down!) which will be slightly disappointing but hey, for me, it isn't an issue.

The Retina screen is amazing, yes, there are far better screens out there when looking at PPI but, as I just said, Retina display is very good, I mean, it's not even classified as full HD for goodness sake!

And well, the camera. We know mega-pixels isn't everything and the camera on the 5s can take outstanding photos. We also know that the iPhone 6's camera will simply take better photos than the 5s can.

So in a word, no, I wouldn't refuse to buy the iPhone 6 because of the specs it has!
 

ionjohn

macrumors 65816
Jun 5, 2013
1,183
9
Canada
I think when people say that "xGB of RAM is REQUIRED" or "I won't buy this phone unless it has 1080p resolution", or the fact that many Android makers and supporters advertise that their phones are better because of higher technical specs that it's a little unfair. However, is that something that actually matters?

For example, comparing my mom's iPhone 5C (1136x640) to my Moto X (1280x720), there's really no increase on my phone's screen. In fact in some cases the iPhone looks even better.

Or take the processor. There are Android phones pushing 2.0GHz Quad-Core and even Octo-Core devices from Samsung, and phones pushing 3-4GB of RAM, yet the iPhone is still able to stay just as smooth and fluid as those phones. Even my Moto X, which is a 1.7GHz Dual Core with 2GB of RAM *still* keeps up with phones like the GS5 in gaming performance and every day tasks. In fact sometimes my Moto X is even faster because it's not having its resources hogged by OEM skins.

Again lets look at the camera. My Moto X has a 10MP camera that does GREAT outdoor shots and the videos look amazing, but comparing indoor shots with the iPhone 5S or front-facing shots the iPhone 5S wins, despite lower MP on both cameras. The MP count really doesn't even have an effect on camera quality yet manufacturers and fanboys use it as a point to make their phone better than the competitor.

Of course your raw technical specifications do matter, and in a data processing trial and raw hardware performance all these high-end Android devices would definitely outclass the iPhone and iPad, but when you look at the devices realistically, is that actually something that matters? I don't think it does, with the iPhone 5/S and iPad Air/Mini 2 being proof that specs are only one part and that your software matters more.

What about you all? Do specs prevent you from looking at a phone? Would you refuse to buy an iPhone 6 because of its specs?
I would. An iPhone costs $800, When I was younger, i was stupid and would buy it no matter what (my money, not my parents 'cause I worked) but now I need to be impressed for it is not cheap and for that kind of money you can get a lot of stuff
 

sunking101

macrumors 604
Sep 19, 2013
6,671
1,812
Why get an i7 chip when an i5 will do, why buy a $2000 Macbook when a $600 laptop will do the same stuff? More RAM and a faster processor will allow heavy users to enjoy their devices more. A nicer screen will appeal to everyone...
 
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scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
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I would. An iPhone costs $800, When I was younger, i was stupid and would buy it no matter what (my money, not my parents 'cause I worked) but now I need to be impressed for it is not cheap and for that kind of money you can get a lot of stuff
Yes, you can get a lot of stuff for that amount of money... stuff that isn't very good.

If Apple's made a point about anything for the past 7 years now, it's that comparing data points on a spec sheet isn't enough to determine what's a great phone and what isn't. Software and how well it's optimized for the hardware on the phone has a lot to do with it too.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,303
1,696
Yes, you can get a lot of stuff for that amount of money... stuff that isn't very good.



If Apple's made a point about anything for the past 7 years now, it's that comparing data points on a spec sheet isn't enough to determine what's a great phone and what isn't. Software and how well it's optimized for the hardware on the phone has a lot to do with it too.

This is absolutely true.

However when you begin to question hardware choices by Apple such as when I returned my iPad Air that logic still stands true. Just not in Apples favor.

Btw I returned the Air because at the time Safari was crashing constantly. iOS 7.1 did address that but not the tab reloading.

Now I don't know if the tab reloading is RAM related or not. However if it is then the lack of hardware is directly effecting user experience.

So less CAN be more but it can also actually be just that....less.
 

scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
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342
This is absolutely true.

However when you begin to question hardware choices by Apple such as when I returned my iPad Air that logic still stands true. Just not in Apples favor.

Btw I returned the Air because at the time Safari was crashing constantly. iOS 7.1 did address that but not the tab reloading.

Now I don't know if the tab reloading is RAM related or not. However if it is then the lack of hardware is directly effecting user experience.

So less CAN be more but it can also actually be just that....less.
Everyone's experience is subjective, and not universal. The tab reloading issue has been beaten to death.

Fortunately, other options exist if iOS isn't right for you.
 

0000757

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Dec 16, 2011
3,893
842
I would. An iPhone costs $800, When I was younger, i was stupid and would buy it no matter what (my money, not my parents 'cause I worked) but now I need to be impressed for it is not cheap and for that kind of money you can get a lot of stuff
But I mean realistically when you think about it, most other devices have these powerful specs because they actually need to have it.

Look at the Moto X, for example. Compared to other flagships it's severely underpowered yet it still manages to be just as good as the others and still has plenty of life left. Most of those other devices need 4GB of RAM and Quad-Core processors because of what the OEMs put on it, it wouldn't perform smoothly without.

Just like scaredpoet said, you don't need big specs to keep in the competition and have longevity. Apple's proved this with the iPhone and iPad.
 

sunking101

macrumors 604
Sep 19, 2013
6,671
1,812
This is absolutely true.

However when you begin to question hardware choices by Apple such as when I returned my iPad Air that logic still stands true. Just not in Apples favor.

Btw I returned the Air because at the time Safari was crashing constantly. iOS 7.1 did address that but not the tab reloading.

Now I don't know if the tab reloading is RAM related or not. However if it is then the lack of hardware is directly effecting user experience.

So less CAN be more but it can also actually be just that....less.
Exactly. I can't rely on my browser not to refresh and I've lost a ton of text when this has happened. Now I have to remember to copy & paste what I've typed before I leave a page, just to make sure I still have it when I return to the webpage. A great user experience!

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Everyone's experience is subjective, and not universal. The tab reloading issue has been beaten to death.

Fortunately, other options exist if iOS isn't right for you.
iOS shouldn't do this though, and fanboy statements that we should move platform if we dare find fault with Apple products are silly.
 

scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
6,626
342
iOS shouldn't do this though,
There's a whole thread about it on the iPad forum, if you wanna beat people over the head with this.

and fanboy statements that we should move platform if we dare find fault with Apple products are silly.
There's nothing "fanboyish" about telling someone that other options exist. Your biggest, most powerful vote is always with your wallet. Keep buying iPads and iPhones, and Apple will assume that they're doing things right enough for people to keep buying their stuff. And for their purposes, they'd be right, pretty much. Look at you: the problem affects you so terribly, and yet you're willing to do the copy-and-paste dance if it means that you get to keep using iOS instead of some other platform. Clearly, the problem isn't severe enough to deprive Apple of a good chunk of the limit on your credit card.
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
20,436
8,262
Gotta be in it to win it
Exactly. I can't rely on my browser not to refresh and I've lost a ton of text when this has happened. Now I have to remember to copy & paste what I've typed before I leave a page, just to make sure I still have it when I return to the webpage. A great user experience!

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iOS shouldn't do this though, and fanboy statements that we should move platform if we dare find fault with Apple products are silly.
How do you know IOS shouldn't do it? Because you work for apple and are on the O/s development team.
 

ionjohn

macrumors 65816
Jun 5, 2013
1,183
9
Canada
Yes, you can get a lot of stuff for that amount of money... stuff that isn't very good.

If Apple's made a point about anything for the past 7 years now, it's that comparing data points on a spec sheet isn't enough to determine what's a great phone and what isn't. Software and how well it's optimized for the hardware on the phone has a lot to do with it too.
You could get an ipad, almost 2 minis, or a macbook air.
 

cube

macrumors P6
May 10, 2004
16,438
4,449
My current phone is 4.2", 768p, 2GiB RAM, 16GB, dual core, with removable battery and SD slot.

So I expect the minimum a replacement to offer to be around 5" (but fully fitting in a back pocket), 1080p, 3GiB RAM, 32GB (rather 64GB), quad core, 64-bit, with removable battery and SD slot. This would qualify as a mid-range phone.
 

scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
6,626
342
You could get an ipad, almost 2 minis, or a macbook air.
Thanks for proving my point... all of the things you've listed make really lousy smartphones.

(They're pretty great at the things they're designed to do, though.)
 

capathy21

macrumors 65816
Jun 16, 2014
1,365
534
Houston, Texas
Do specs prevent you from looking at a phone? Would you refuse to buy an iPhone 6 because of its specs?
No. Specs are nothing more than number on a sheet of paper. The Moto X on paper is under powered junk. In real life it was 5 times the performer that the Galaxy S4 was. It's all about the software optimization. I have a far better user experience on my "under powered" iphone 5S than I ever did with the Nexus 5, GS4, HTC ONE, Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Galaxy S3, Note 2, Note 3, you get the point. All of these devices were "quad core" power houses with much higher specs than the iphone 5S or the Moto X yet they both outperformed these others by a mile.

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What is the point of having a lot of ram in a phone?
No point..

Same people who say every user needs 16GB of ram in their computer.
 

cube

macrumors P6
May 10, 2004
16,438
4,449
What is the point of having a lot of ram in a phone?
What is a lot?

I find that is 16GiB of RAM is not enough in a notebook in 2013, a phone that had 2GiB of RAM last year is just right (1GiB usually filled running basic stuff).
 

Meister

Suspended
Oct 10, 2013
5,455
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What is a lot?I find that is 16GiB of RAM is not enough in a notebook in 2013, a phone that had 2GiB of RAM last year is just right (1GiB usually filled running basic stuff).
that doesnt really explain anything.
16gb in a mbp or 1gb in a phone might not be enough for you, but what do you use it for?
 

cube

macrumors P6
May 10, 2004
16,438
4,449
that doesnt really explain anything.
16gb in a mbp or 1gb in a phone might not be enough for you, but what do you use it for?
As I said, a basic regular user will fill 1GiB of RAM, so a basic phone should have no less than 1.5GB of RAM last year, for not being throwaway.

And 8GB storage might have been OK in a budget phone, but not in one costing $400 last year.
 

I7guy

macrumors Core
Nov 30, 2013
20,436
8,262
Gotta be in it to win it
Shouldn't because it's extremely unhelpful, why would they design that into the o/s on purpose?
But there may be some underlying reason IOS will use cell data if it's connected. While I understand you believe IOS should not use cell data when wifi is connected, what may be happening is when the phone is sleeping, wifi is off but cellular data is on. Background tasks unable to use wifi use cellular data.

Which is why I turn off cellular data when I positively don't need it on
 

Meister

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Oct 10, 2013
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As I said, a basic regular user will fill 1GiB of RAM, so a basic phone should have no less than 1.5GB of RAM last year, for not being throwaway.
And 8GB storage might have been OK in a budget phone, but not in one costing $400 last year.
How do you "fill" 1gb of ram? How does that look in real use? Does your iPhone not work properly with 512mb?
I know that my mini works fine with 512mb.

Can you explain?