What is RAM and Why does it matter in a Smartphone?

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Today, smartphones are increasingly packed with memory. Smartphones with a large amount of RAM are considered to have good specifications but may be costly. Mobiles with varying RAM capacities are available in the market. A phone with 8 GB of RAM will be adequate for most users in 2022. In this article, we’re going to explain what RAM is and why does it matter in a Smartphone?

First of all, you don’t need to know that RAM stands for Random Access Memory (any 4th grader knows that!). But you should know that it’s a super-fast form of storage- much faster than your phone’s main storage where you store your apps, videos, and music- that holds your smartphone’s data. The main use of RAM for your smartphone is to hold data that the CPU and operating system’s kernel- as well as active applications- are using. This may seem complex, but you only need to understand three things: RAM is a place where data can be stored for a brief period of time, RAM is extremely fast to read or write, and RAM data is erased when you shut down your phone.

How does your phone use its RAM?

RAM in your phone is mostly used to run apps and store their data. In simpler words, more RAM can let more apps run in the background without slowing your phone down. Many of the same apps will be used more frequently as you use your phone. Apps like these tend you stay in RAM and are running continuously, so they’re instantly available.

Yes, more RAM means your phone can store more OS data and apps. This actually gives an impression of a faster phone as the OS and app that you’ve used earlier are already ready to use.

Whenever you multi-task and run a lot of apps in the background, you will need a smartphone with a lot of RAM. This way you won’t have an issue with the apps closing down or the phone lagging. Both high-end and mid-range smartphone models have 8GB RAM, so you can choose according to your budget and other requirements.

Your Android phone runs on top of the Linux kernel. Android and memory management are often mentioned together. It’s a Linux thing, and android is just like Ubuntu, a Linux kernel-based OS. It means that the purpose of Android was to load up memory with apps and their associated data as fast as possible and keep it full, leaving only a minimum amount of free space for housekeeping duties.

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So How Does it Benefit you?

As discussed above, RAM allows more apps to run in the background. But here’s a detailed answer.

A phone that’s doing more behind the scenes requires more RAM. In today’s busy life, we often switch between apps and usually name it multitasking. If your phone multitasks well, it is because it makes good use of RAM or simply has a ton of it. If RAM is missing in a phone, apps would fully close whenever you switch apps. This would mean that you would have to start it again as if you’re opening it for the first time, and that’ll in turn cause a delay. So even if your phone has the fastest chip in the world, it would still feel slow without RAM.

For instance, let’s say you’re playing a game on your phone but amid you get a phone call. You pick it up and after finishing the work you might wanna go back to playing. So when you answer the call, your phone keeps the game loaded in its memory. So when you re-open the game, it’ll start from where you left it. It means the more stuff you’ve loaded into memory, the better. If you don’t use any app for a which, android phones automatically kills those apps.

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Why Having More RAM isn’t Always Better?

You must be thinking that if RAM boosts the performance of your phone then what’s the harm in having more of it?

Well, as Poole said “The more RAM you put into a phone, the more power that will draw and the shorter your battery life will be”. He further stated, “RAM takes up the same amount of power regardless of what’s in it – if it’s an application or it’s just free, you’re still paying for it in terms of power.”

In other words, we can say that if you aren’t using RAM, then it may be an unnecessary drain on your battery. Poole said, “Even if they’re not doing much, they can cause the processor to spin up to service any work that they have to do and that can contribute to energy drain”.

At last, how much RAM your smartphone requires depends totally on how you use your smartphone. Some people want 12GB or 16GB mostly because of their work but anything over 8GB is overkill for the vast majority of people.

Thank You For Reading:

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