True memory of a 32gig gen1 motoX phone


So I just bought a “32Gig” gen1 motoX off eBay, which is a memory upgrade from my 16g motoX, and won’t mess up my legacy plan, however, when I fired up the phone, and was checking it out, the TOTAL listed memory on the stats screen is only 26gigs, with 24 available. This doesn’t seem right. My phone seems about 6 gigs light. Was this a normal thing? Should I be returning this phone? The seller had a “no returns” policy, but I feel that I can make a decent case for “item sold is not as advertised.”


Yes and no.

My 16GB G3 indicates about 4.2GB of total in not usable. Your 32GB X1 indicates about 5.7GB. The difference is 1.5 and less than 5% of 32. The phones Android operating system and bloatware fills/uses most of the memory some may consider missing. I would not be concerned. Marshmallow and Nougat at least show users they taking up 5-6GB for the upgraded OS.



not specific to your case but an explanation for why you see less in settings memory than description,
external: 1 K = 1000, internal 1K = 1024, bytes… phones, being computers will always see 1K as 1024 bytes, but the mfg. will always list their specs in 1000 bytes per 1K and not the 1024 bytes that the computers(phones) see… so between the specs and actual the phone sees you loose 24 bytes per K of memory… adds up over count…

so moto states your phone has
32,000,000,000 bytes

true 32 GB in internal to device
34,359,720,776 bytes

so you loose
2,359,720,776 bytes lost in the translation
32,000,000,000 - 2,359,720,776 = 29.640,279,224 bytes
or 27.60466 GB
also you will need to subtract some for the firmware on top of that,
so 26.33 GB is about right



Per your scenario wouldn’t our phones see an increase rather than a loss?



no, the makers use 1000 and the computer/phone uses 1024.
or the makers says you can put 5 gal of water in the bucket, but you really can only but 4.95 gals

example, I just had to buy a new crock pot. the specs on the crock pot is 4 qt, you can never put a full 4 qt in the crock pot because it will splatter all over or boil over… so less that 4 qt…
the mfg uses the 4 qt to say it will hold 4 qts, but what they don’t tell you is that in order to get the full 4 qts in the crock you have to fill it all the way to the top…

maker/mfg. always use the rose colored glasses when they spec out something

in this case they use 1000 as a base line to make their memory look bigger, knowing full well that computers see 1024 as their base line, there have been a few Lawsuits, over the years about this but the mfg. have been able to successfully argue that 1K = 1000, which comes from the metric system and not the binary system used in digital computer/phones…


the chart down the page is really important
"Various Drive Sizes and their Binary and Decimal Capacities"

it goes for memory, ram, rom, ros, hard drives, ssd, flash drive… etc… computers will always report less of whatever the Mfg. decides to print on the device…

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Both the @PlaneTherapist and the @TheDoctor are correct here
Most people don’t know the difference between a GB and a GiB and the industry will just put the more familiar term on the box
a 32 GB drive would be seen as a 29 GB to the computer (there are 1,073,741,824 in a computer GiB so 32000000000/1,073,741,824)

the other 4.89 GB is taken up by the core ROM which includes the OS and the pre-installed apps (like the Moto App, Google Play Movies, Games, Newsstand, books etc…)

this is normal in the computer and personal electronics industry (apple and Microsoft both do this (if building a computer one orders the main drive and then install the OS (Linux/Windows/Mac) would you subtract the ~33 GB that the OS took when you told people what size drive was in it?)



Decimal definition
1 GB = 1000000000 bytes

Binary definition
1 GiB = 1073741824 bytes

Two more cents to keep it as simple as possible (KISS) for those interested in knowing more about their phone’s memory.

Wikipedia has a good gigabyte/GB explanation without additional author rhetoric.

An example using @mortd’s new phone to get actual amount of memory using GB relevant numbers to KISS,
32GB / 1.0737 = 29.8GB.


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It’s possible that the age of the phone has caused bad memory sectors which are then not shown by the operating system as available memory. However, a lot of what others has stated is more likely.


Sweet. Thanks to everyone for the prompt replies; both technical (which I could kind of follow), and the not so technical; and cooling me down before I wigged out on this eBay vendor. It seemed sort of shady in the first place as he didn’t even bother to take the box/phone out of the mailing envelope of the person who sold it to HIM… didn’t even redact their mailing address.
Love you guys… RW is the best.
[V]ort D.

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