It was reported a few days ago by ArsTechnica that the Galaxy S23 series consumes a whopping 60GB of storage space from the 128GB available due to bloatware and unnecessary apps. However, that was inaccurate and misleading. Samsung’s newest phones do not consume around 60GB of space for their software.
Some Galaxy S23 users posted screenshots of the My Files app, showing the operating system (labeled as System) consuming 68GB (or even more) of storage space on a 512GB Galaxy S23 Ultra. However, the My Files doesn’t have usage access permission by default, so it clubs the storage space taken by the operating system, pre-installed apps, and user-installed apps (and their data) in the System section. Once you click the ‘i’ icon beside the Apps category, the My Files app requests permission for usage access. Once you grant that permission, it displays storage space taken by the operating system (and pre-installed apps) and user-installed apps separately.
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A lot of storage is lost due to storage unit conversion
Even after separating user-installed apps from its storage count, the My Files app still displays over 50GB of storage space consumed by the system. And that’s because Samsung tries to compensate for the difference between the advertised storage capacity and the actual storage capacity of the device. As you might know, when you buy a hard disk or an SSD, you don’t get the total advertised storage capacity. It’s because humans and devices (and the OS) count storage space in different units, and we suggest you read this article to understand the difference. When you buy a 1TB storage drive, you get around 931GB of actual storage space. Similarly, when you buy a 512GB device, you get about 477GB of actual storage space.
So, for a 512GB Galaxy S23 Ultra, its actual storage capacity is 477GB. That’s 35GB missing from the advertised capacity. Samsung has decided to add that missing storage space (around 7% of capacity is lost due to unit conversion from Gigibytes to Gigabytes) into the System section. Hence, the actual system storage space (25GB) and the missing storage capacity (35GB) are clubbed to display around 60GB of space taken by the System. There have been several class action lawsuits in the past against hard drive brands, and every company follows the same pattern to advertise the storage space on their phones. You can read this Twitter thread to learn more about how devices and brands measure storage space.
Hence, the actual storage space taken up by the Galaxy S23 series is around 25GB to 30GB, and not 60GB as some publications incorrectly reported it. ArsTechnica has now issued a correction to its original article around this issue.
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