Is 128GB enough for Galaxy S20? Is a 256GB or 512GB Galaxy S20 worth it?
How much free storage does the Galaxy S20 actually come with?
You never get the exact amount of free storage on your smartphone as advertised. The phone's operating system and core (undeletable) apps will have taken some storage as soon as you first turn it on, and need to remain there for it to function properly.
On the Galaxy S20, the Android operating system along with potential carrier pre-installed software may take well over 19GB of storage. The exact number can vary and will increase over time as the phone is being used, but out the box, the system-taken storage on a Galaxy S20 would normally be between 19GB and 29GB. It's safe to assume that whatever storage option you choose, your phone will likely come with at least 20GB less free storage than advertised. Taking this in consideration, your Galaxy S20 128GB variant is likely to come with about 108GB or less free storage, while the 256GB and 512GB variants – with about 236GB and 492GB respectively.
How much space do apps and games take on the Galaxy S20?
How many apps can a 128GB Galaxy S20 hold?
Let's take a look at some of the more popular apps most people are likely to install, and see how much space they would take on your Galaxy S20. YouTube takes about 110MB of storage, while TikTok takes 61MB. Facebook takes about 42MB, while Messenger – another 38MB. WhatsApp takes a mere 22MB, Zoom – 31MB, Snapchat – 55MB and Netflix – about 15MB when first installed.
Although those are minute numbers that won't make a dent on your 128GB of storage, do keep in mind that some of those apps gradually take up more space as you continue using them, as they will automatically store photos, videos and other data locally on your Galaxy S20. In any case, what we have so far amounts to about 374MB of storage being taken, which is a mere 0.37GB. Obviously, it depends on your usage, but even the 128GB Samsung Galaxy S20 should easily be able to fit all the apps you would ever need.
How many games can a 128GB Galaxy S20 hold?
Games understandably take more storage than the average app, as they often contain plenty of music, sounds, high-resolution images and other large data. Minecraft is an exception, as it only takes just under 100MB, while Call of Duty: Mobile will take about 2GB of storage, PubG Mobile – another 1.6GB, Blizzard's Hearthstone – 45MB at download and about 1.3GB after installation, Pokemon GO – about 330MB. If you also want some console games on your phone – Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas takes 2,4GB of storage, while Max Payne Mobile – 1,1GB. Even if you download all that, it amounts to 8,83GB, so the base 128GB Galaxy S20 option should be more than enough for all of your favorite games.
How much space do videos, photos, and music take up on the Galaxy S20?
VideosThe Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra has a 108MP main camera, while the S20 and S20+ have 12MP ones. The average person will likely shoot videos at the most common resolution of 1080p at 30 frames-per-second (FPS), which equates to around 1,75 megabytes being taken per second of recording.
With that in mind, even the 128GB Galaxy S20 has enough storage for 1200 minutes or 20 hours of video recordings – more than most people would film during a phone's lifespan. Of course, power users who may want to shoot at 4K 60FPS will be able to fit less camera footage – a bit over 240 minutes or 4 hours before the phone fills up. This is still a solid amount of clips, and likely enough even for professional YouTubers and vloggers, who don't mind backing up or deleting older videos once every few months.
PhotosA photo taken with any of the Samsung Galaxy S20 variants will commonly range between 3 and 6 megabytes in size. Most of the photos in our usage were close to 4MB, so taking that number in mind, you can comfortably take up to 31,900 photographs on the base 128GB model before it fills up. In turn, the 256GB Galaxy S20 will fit up to 63,900 photos, and the 512GB model – up to 127,900 photos. You may choose to take higher or lower resolution photos than the default, but even then, the base Galaxy S20 should have enough storage for the average user's photo needs, at least for a couple of years.
MusicSome people like saving their music on-device, rather than streaming it, so it can be enjoyed offline. As songs can vary greatly in length and quality, thus in file size, we'll use an average as an example – a 4-minute high-quality 320mbps song off of Spotify, 9.6 megabytes in size. More than 13,300 such songs can fit in the base Galaxy S20 128GB variant. Respectively, over 26,600 and 53,300 high-quality MP3 songs can fit in the 256GB and 512GB Galaxy S20 models.
So, which Samsung Galaxy S20 model should I get: 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB?
The Galaxy S20 128GB already has enough storage for most users. 128 gigabytes are more than enough for all of your apps and games, and you'll be able to record up to 20 hours of video clips before it fills up. Even if you plan on keeping your phone for the next 3-to-4 years, it's unlikely that you'll ever need to worry about storage during that period. Going with this option over the more expensive ones is likely the best choice, so long as you're not planning to always shoot videos at the highest possible resolution, or to build a huge offline movie and music library on the phone.
The Galaxy S20 256GB is a sweet middle option, but unnecessary for almost anyone. Power users would likely go for the 512GB option, while the average user should be more than comfortable with 128GB. Regardless, having 256GB of storage on your phone means you can easily store all of your favorite movies, music, and everything else on it, and comfortably use your S20 for at least 4-to-5 years before it's time to upgrade or start freeing up storage.
The Galaxy S20 512GB is overkill for most people, but a great option for power users planning to constantly record videos in 4K or even 8K. 512GB is more than enough even for the average laptop user, so on a phone, you really should have a plan for all that storage in order to justify the price it will cost you. If unsure, the previous two options are probably going to fit your needs more than well.
Does the Galaxy S20 have a microSD card?
Yes, all Galaxy S20 models, except for the limited edition Verizon S20 5G UW, have a microSD card slot, and support microSD cards of up to 1 terabyte, which equates to 1000 gigabytes! So even if you're on the fence about whether the 128GB Galaxy S20 option will be enough for you, you'll be happy to know that you can always extend that storage via a microSD card.