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GooseInTheCaboose

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 2, 2022
298
176
You can get a reasonably fast 2TB external SSD for $150-$200 today, but that amount of internal Apple storage will run you $800. Why is Apple’s internal storage SO expensive?
 

dg8623

macrumors newbie
Sep 23, 2022
18
26
Northern Ireland
There are a couple of answers to this as far as I can tell.

Apple SSDs are fast, they always have been, as technology has progressed Apple hasn't struggled to keep up and even overtake some of the top SSD manufacturers out there. Anyone who has used one of the new Macs can corroborate this.

Another is the obvious Apple Tax, as much as Apple isn't as overpriced as people make out for somethings, it is absolutely impossible to deny that they have suped up this price simply because they can.

Once you buy your laptop or Mac, that's it for the most part so they know that you'll want to get a decent amount of it and they KNOW you'll still pay for it no matter how much they charge. It's the same with the internal memory they offer.

Either way, if people will pay a certain number for it, apple will sell it for that number +20%.
 

NewUsername

macrumors 6502a
Aug 20, 2019
583
1,314
First reason is that their SSDs are really fast. Compare it with a Samsung X5 SSD, they aren’t cheap either. But the second reason is simply that Apple earns a lot of money on SSD upgrades. It’s similar to cars, the base model is affordable but the options are expensive.

Personally, I do pay extra to get 512GB and I would also consider 1TB, but everything above that is just too expensive. But if your budget is tight, you can also survive on 256GB and get a cheap external SSD.
 

GooseInTheCaboose

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 2, 2022
298
176
First reason is that their SSDs are really fast. Compare it with a Samsung X5 SSD, they aren’t cheap either. But the second reason is simply that Apple earns a lot of money on SSD upgrades. It’s similar to cars, the base model is affordable but the options are expensive.

Personally, I do pay extra to get 512GB and I would also consider 1TB, but everything above that is just too expensive. But if your budget is tight, you can also survive on 256GB and get a cheap external SSD.
Yeah I've always gotten about 1tb but my photography hobby has blossemed to the point where I will soon need at least 2TB if I want to keep all my photos/videos on my mac without constantly deleting. And then I like to have all my stuff on my ipad too. External SSD for mac Photos Library + iCloud is looking very appealing now rather than paying the fee for more storage on every device I buy from now on.

The way I'm shooting soon 2TB might start feeling tight...
 
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saudor

macrumors 68000
Jul 18, 2011
1,510
2,112
First reason is that their SSDs are really fast.
I think apple focuses way too much on this aspect which may not bring much real life benefit - especially on things like macbook airs.

However, what people will notice is the raw capacity and how much apple holds back on this. It wasn't that long ago that macbook PROs started with 128gb of ssd space. I once checked my friends' computers and their SSD space was all maxed out (which is also bad for the drive too)

But maybe that's the whole point: Make people struggle with low space, then run into issues with premature failure as the wear-levelling algorithms cant run as efficiently with 99% utilization, etc .
 
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maflynn

macrumors Haswell
May 3, 2009
73,682
43,717
Why is Apple’s internal storage SO expensive?
Because they can. There's really no other reason as to why its expensive. People are willing to pay for it and unlike other computers, you have buy the storage up front with no ability to upgrade later. This leads to people over-speccing their computers, i.e., "future proofing" because they're concerned about painting themselves into a corner.
 
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ian87w

macrumors G3
Feb 22, 2020
8,704
12,637
Indonesia
First reason is that their SSDs are really fast. Compare it with a Samsung X5 SSD, they aren’t cheap either. But the second reason is simply that Apple earns a lot of money on SSD upgrades. It’s similar to cars, the base model is affordable but the options are expensive.

Personally, I do pay extra to get 512GB and I would also consider 1TB, but everything above that is just too expensive. But if your budget is tight, you can also survive on 256GB and get a cheap external SSD.
The fact that Apple cut corners on their $1500 M2 MacBook Pro with single chip 256GB SSD kinda shows their priority being cost/margin driven first, not quality/performance.
 

RokinAmerica

macrumors regular
Jul 18, 2022
203
357
Why do some of you compare external SSD's with internal Apple SSD's? I can get a NVMe ssd 2TB for under $200 vs $600 to upgrade on Apple. Add on $200 for 8GB ram? I can get a great 32GB kit for that.

Apple charges it because it has a large base that will buy anything as it is dropped.

As far as "really fast" ssd's, wow.
 
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saudor

macrumors 68000
Jul 18, 2011
1,510
2,112
They also good TBW values. My boot SSD has written 684 TB but has only used 2% of its lifetime. That comes out to a calculated TBW value ~3240 TBW. A Samsung 980 Pro has a TBW of 1200.
Those are the warranty values though. Apple makes no such claims. In 2011, the warranty values were in the tens of terabytes but the higher quality 256gb drives could write over 2 petabytes (>2000 TB) of data.
 

BigMcGuire

Cancelled
Jan 10, 2012
9,832
14,029
It's a cost that those of us who have used Apple for a long time just accept. Is it expensive? Yes. But I enjoy the hardware quality, warranty, software, and the fact that all my data is synced across all my devices seamlessly so I'm willing to pay a premium for storage.
 

DukeBlackadder

macrumors newbie
Jul 13, 2023
1
0
As mentioned by some earlier comments, the pricing of Mac SSDs is unreasonably high simply because they can charge exorbitant amounts. For a fraction of the price, you can purchase an M.2 SSD that offers superior specifications. Even if TBW specifications were a concern, enterprise-class SSDs are available at a lower cost. There is no legitimate technical, performance, or quality justification for the current pricing of Mac SSDs.

When it comes to desktops, using an external SSD is certainly a viable option. However, it is evidently suboptimal for laptops.

If Mac were to utilize standard M.2 SSDs, customers would obtain faster Macs at a more affordable price, and they would have the flexibility to expand or replace storage as needed.
 

unrigestered

Suspended
Jun 17, 2022
879
840
fwiw, i recently bought a 4TB NVMe on Amazon for my Linux laptop.

cost me a whopping 180 Euros as opposed to... what was Apple charging again?

grant you, it's "only" rated @ 5GB/s, but still.

edit: just checked the Apple website, and it's +1150 Euros for 4TB, so not even 6.5x as expensive for an upgrade that's effectively just 3TB! 👍
 

Onimusha370

macrumors 6502a
Aug 25, 2010
986
1,418
Yeah I've always gotten about 1tb but my photography hobby has blossemed to the point where I will soon need at least 2TB if I want to keep all my photos/videos on my mac without constantly deleting. And then I like to have all my stuff on my ipad too. External SSD for mac Photos Library + iCloud is looking very appealing now rather than paying the fee for more storage on every device I buy from now on.

The way I'm shooting soon 2TB might start feeling tight...
I have a similar issue, my photo library is roughly 1.7TB, I have 1TB in my MBP and keep the photo library on a 4TB external SSD. lugging the external around with me had been a bit annoying though so I’ve now created a 2nd photo library with just my edited albums (around 80GB currently) so I can take all my favourite pics with me and leave the external at home. Working well so far, although it is a bit odd to have to manage both libraries.
 
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