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Apple reveals iPhone 4 has 512MB RAM, doubling iPad - report

post #1 of 60
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Apple officials quietly confirmed at last week's Worldwide Developers Conference that the forthcoming iPhone 4 has 512MB of RAM integrated into its custom A4 processor, according to a new report.

A couple of sites (1 2) reported Thursday that Apple confirmed the 512MB figure during one of the WWDC sessions held last week at San Francisco's Moscone Center. That's twice the RAM found in last year's iPhone 3GS, as well as twice the 256MB found in the just-released iPad with the same A4 processor.

For comparison, the original iPhone and the following year's iPhone 3G both had just 128MB of RAM.

The news that the latest A4 processor has 512MB of RAM directly contradicts photographic evidence of an iPhone 4 prototype disassembled in Vietnam. Solutions provider iFixit read the markings on that hardware, before iPhone 4 was formally announced, and found that the hardware had 256MB of RAM -- the same amount of memory found inside the A4 processor on the iPad.

Apple's custom-built A4 processor was first released in the iPad running at a 1GHz clock speed. It is packaged just like previous iPhone processors, with three layers of circuitry that include the microprocessor in one package, and two memory modules in the other.

Apple declined to announce the RAM or the clock speed of the A4 found inside iPhone 4 when it introduced the handset at last week's WWDC keynote. Some have taken the fact that the speed was not revealed to mean that the processor is underclocked from its iPad counterpart, likely to achieve better battery life in the smaller form factor.



Thursday's news also confirms a report in May from DigiTimes that said the next-generation handset would have 512MB of RAM, citing Samsung as the memory provider.
post #2 of 60
That's great to hear! More RAM = faster applications.
post #3 of 60
Awesome.
post #4 of 60
512 RAM? Awesome
and I bet the cloack speed is 1Ghz btw
post #5 of 60
It's like history repeating itself ... I had a bleeding edge Apple device a few years back called a 512 Mac ... only it was K not MB
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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post #6 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

It's like history repeating itself ... I had a bleeding edge Apple device a few years back called a 512 Mac ... only it was K not MB

Apple have come a long way since the 128K Macintosh.
A lot can happen in 26 year in the tech industry: iPhone 4 has 1,024 times the power of the 128K Macintosh (if I've done the math correctly)!
post #7 of 60
that is good news! Wish they had upped the RAM on the iPad, though. I jailbroke my ipad, and with it comes the ability to see how much free memory is available and it can be startling how fast that 256mb is all used up!

Something as simple as having mail, ipod, and safari open with a few "tabs", I can be down to 20 free MBs pretty easily. Now that is with using backgrounder, and true multitasking, where iOS 4 will have a more economical version.

I love the iPad, but they definitely held things out to either make iPad2 that much more of a "must have" or to drive up the profit margin on the first iPad.
post #8 of 60
Need more RAM for multitasking. Since iPad won't get multi tasking for a while no point to stick more ram in there. Gen2 will have like a GIg to run a retina display they will stick on it I am sure.
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post #9 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe hs View Post

512 RAM? Awesome
and I bet the cloack speed is 1Ghz btw

Nah... The probably tossed in the extra RAM to make up for the slower A4 clock speed. It's a good compromise to maintain performance while trying to maximize battery life.
post #10 of 60
That's smart of them to trade extra memory for extra processor speed as one sucks way too much power.
post #11 of 60
As a iPad owner, this blows.

As a future iPhone 4 owner, this is nice.

Seems the iPhone is still Apples #1 priority.

Seems stupid as the iPad has still a higher res and has more potential for multiple-tasking. He'll, the iPad just came out 2 1/2 months ago!
post #12 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheff View Post

Need more RAM for multitasking. Since iPad won't get multi tasking for a while no point to stick more ram in there. Gen2 will have like a GIg to run a retina display they will stick on it I am sure.

What???

IOS 4 is coming to the iPad in a few months so why is there no point.

More potential to multiple-task on an iPad frankly.
post #13 of 60
The HTC Desire has 576MB RAM and a 1GHz processor. Specs here:

http://www.htc.com/www/product/desir...ification.html

By going to 512MB rather than 256MB, Apple's just playing catchup.
post #14 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by msantti View Post

Seems stupid as the iPad has still a higher res and has more potential for multiple-tasking. He'll, the iPad just came out 2 1/2 months ago!

The iOS for the iPad has a smaller footprint since it does not need to support as many things as the iPhone does (e.g., voice control, phone software, still camera and video, etc...). You are not comparing Apples and oranges here !

This was all discussed not to long ago when the memory differences were first brought up - check the archives.
post #15 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by complicity View Post

The HTC Desire has 576MB RAM and a 1GHz processor. Specs here:

http://www.htc.com/www/product/desir...ification.html

By going to 512MB rather than 256MB, Apple's just playing catchup.

Apple is updating hardware that gets rolled out once a year, not every month or so like the Android phones. Hardly playing catchup.
post #16 of 60
oh SHNAP SON
post #17 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by complicity View Post

The HTC Desire has 576MB RAM and a 1GHz processor. Specs here:

http://www.htc.com/www/product/desir...ification.html

By going to 512MB rather than 256MB, Apple's just playing catchup.

I do not understand how so many Apple enthusiasts can write such lame remarks, like the tomato sauce one quoted above.
All kidding aside, Apple has not been about specs since the short lived ads for the powerpc architecture (that smoked Intel).
Apple is about performance in the usability sense. To that end, doubling the RAM is likely neither catchup nor mustard, but as already suggested, a way to enhance battery life while maintaining performance.
Even with regards to the 'Retina' display, it is about smoothness of text, and less about "I have more pixels than you do" kind of marketing.
.... and that is why Apple is finally so wildly successful, no need to compare specs, just buy Apple products and you know you will have a better user EXPERIENCE than [just about] any other device in the same category. All ATT problems aside, of course.
post #18 of 60
when it's ready.
post #19 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

The iOS for the iPad has a smaller footprint since it does not need to support as many things as the iPhone does (e.g., voice control, phone software, still camera and video, etc...). You are not comparing Apples and oranges here !

This was all discussed not to long ago when the memory differences were first brought up - check the archives.

I'm still not buying an iPad until Rev. 2.
post #20 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by complicity View Post

The HTC Desire has 576MB RAM and a 1GHz processor. Specs here:

http://www.htc.com/www/product/desir...ification.html

By going to 512MB rather than 256MB, Apple's just playing catchup.

Very true. And the Desire has a smaller battery, lower resolution and no gyroscope. And sometime before the iPhone 4G/5 is announced, there will be a phone with better specs then these. It's all a case of catch-up. Be happy. The competition keeps phones from all vendors improving.
post #21 of 60
Upgrading from an iPhone 1st generation. And not getting iPad until version 2.
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #22 of 60
Does the GPU use the system memory? Might explain the need for more RAM than the iPad.

Any know the color bit depth on the iPhone 4 and the iPad?

Second thought, frame buffers for video recording, encoding, & editing. Stuff the iPad won't need to do.
post #23 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by msantti View Post

As a iPad owner, this blows.

As a future iPhone 4 owner, this is nice.

Seems the iPhone is still Apples #1 priority.

Seems stupid as the iPad has still a higher res and has more potential for multiple-tasking. He'll, the iPad just came out 2 1/2 months ago!

No ... the two platforms will continue to leap frog each other. iPad had superior hardware to 3GS (for example A4 chip and better screen. Back facing camera makes no sense, but look for front facing camera on iPad next year and other goodies like gyros, etc.
post #24 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe hs View Post

Apple have come a long way since the 128K Macintosh.
A lot can happen in 26 year in the tech industry: iPhone 4 has 1,024 times the power of the 128K Macintosh (if I've done the math correctly)!

The 8MHz 68000 could do 1 MIPS. The 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 can do 2000 MIPS, so the CPU is 2000x faster (a dual-core 1.2GHz ARM Cortex A9 can do 6000 MIPS, if you're thinking about iPad 2 next year).

iPhone 4 has 4096 times as much RAM.

The Mac had an 800KB floppy, the iPhone has 32GB, that's over 32000x as much storage.
post #25 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by sheff View Post

Need more RAM for multitasking. Since iPad won't get multi tasking for a while no point to stick more ram in there. Gen2 will have like a GIg to run a retina display they will stick on it I am sure.

iPad will probably multi-task by the end of this year. All that is needed is an iOS update. Apple already announced 3GS will multitask and existing iPad hardware is superior to 3GS. Better processor ... same memory. Won't need any extra ram to run the display, that is handled with graphics chip.
post #26 of 60
Wish the iPad had those kind of specs... I'm sure that'll happen in a year or so.
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post #27 of 60
Quote:
As a iPad owner, this blows.

As a future iPhone 4 owner, this is nice.

Quote:
Wish the iPad had those kind of specs...

Who cares!? If you liked the iPad yesterday, there is no reason to think less of it today merely because a subsequent product [allegedly] has more RAM.

It is about the capabilities and the experience. If iOS proves to be sluggish to multitask when it comes to the iPad in Fall, then there will be reason to complain.

One of the most distinguishing things about Apple is the fact that they focus on what really matters -the degree to which the tools and toys that they create impact the lives of users.

Yes, there will always be people out there who will sleep better if they have "spec-a" instead of "spec-b," but in reality, quantitative differences in specifications are irrelevant if they do not translate into qualitative and/or quantitative differences in the utility of the device.
post #28 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trajectory View Post

That's great to hear! More RAM = faster applications.

It is unlikely that many applications will take advantage of that much RAM, simply because they still have to be designed for the iPhone 3G, 3GS and iPad. If anything, it's all about a smoother multitasking experience with fewer apps forcefully being terminated due to low system memory.
post #29 of 60
I'm also concerned about the iPad only having 256 MB. Mine arrives tomorrow via Fedex!

When it comes to multitasking, more RAM is better, in my book. Given the much larger form factor of the iPad, I'm really surprised that they didn't go with 512 MB at least. If they are squeezing 512 MB in the iPhone 4 (can't wait) then there must be a good reason for it.

I probably should have waited for iPad V2 (I'd love to see the "retina display" pixel density on the iPad) but just "had to have it".
post #30 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristophB View Post

Does the GPU use the system memory? Might explain the need for more RAM than the iPad.

iPhone 4 has fewer pixels than iPad. Maybe the video is an issue, apparently there isn't an iMovie for iPad. To me, it would seem that editing on an iPad would be a lot more comfortable than an iPhone.
post #31 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

The iOS for the iPad has a smaller footprint since it does not need to support as many things as the iPhone does (e.g., voice control, phone software, still camera and video, etc...). You are not comparing Apples and oranges here !

This was all discussed not to long ago when the memory differences were first brought up - check the archives.

Those are good points!

It almost does it for me... Except I just can't understand why they would give the iPad less RAM than the iPhone 4. Physical space-- no problem! Battery-- shouldn't be an issue! Cost-- maybe, but not that much! Chip shortage-- I don't know.

It is especially puzzling when you consider that the iPad is better suited than the iPhone 4, for things like Video Editing. And that Steve specifically mentioned this at All things D.

...In the case of RAM, More is More! Call me confused!

.
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post #32 of 60
While I'm very glad to see this, all this has me worried about fragmentation among Apple's now many diverse product lines. The iPad has a very different resolution than the iPhone first trifecta or the iPhone 4. The iPhone 2G will be stuck on 3.1.3, the iPhone 3G, 3Gs and 4 will be on variants of iOS 4. The iPad will be 3.2 and this is true of the various iPod Touches as well with 3.1.3 and 4 being spread out among them.

For ram we've now got 128 megs, 256 megs, and 512 megs, oh and even though they have just sold out the 3G which I guess is just barely discontinued as the iPhone 4 is trying to ship, still had 128 megs.

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post #33 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

While I'm very glad to see this, all this has me worried about fragmentation among Apple's now many diverse product lines. The iPad has a very different resolution than the iPhone first trifecta or the iPhone 4. The iPhone 2G will be stuck on 3.1.3, the iPhone 3G, 3Gs and 4 will be on variants of iOS 4. The iPad will be 3.2 and this is true of the various iPod Touches as well with 3.1.3 and 4 being spread out among them.

For ram we've now got 128 megs, 256 megs, and 512 megs, oh and even though they have just sold out the 3G which I guess is just barely discontinued as the iPhone 4 is trying to ship, still had 128 megs.

I don't believe it is as bad as you think! Consider the degree of "Apple Mobile" fragmentation is caused and managed by a single source-- Apple. The sources of Android of fragmentation come from all over the place.

When Apple announces a new iOS it usually supports, at least, the prior hardware iteration. They no longer sell devices that support older iOS versions. So the older devices, while still doing what they always did, will be obsoleted/replaced/devolved over time.

The SDK makes it relatively easy to support multiple Display Resolutions within a single app.

The large population, of consistent (hardware/software) in the older devices makes them an on-going lucrative target for developers.

.
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post #34 of 60
Great. I just wish it had 64GB of memory. I will fill my 32 next week in minutes. :-(
post #35 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by msantti View Post

As a iPad owner, this blows.

As a future iPhone 4 owner, this is nice.

Seems the iPhone is still Apples #1 priority.

Seems stupid as the iPad has still a higher res and has more potential for multiple-tasking. He'll, the iPad just came out 2 1/2 months ago!

planned obsolescence my good man. it's in every apple product you buy, including this one.
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post #36 of 60
oh, and PS...

WANT!
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post #37 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleZilla View Post

Great. I just wish it had 64GB of memory. I will fill my 32 next week in minutes. :-(

Shucks, there's only 6.3GB still free on my 64GB. No matter what size memory, the rule of thumb is there's never enough! \

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post #38 of 60
Who's to say that the iPad will have only a yearly upgrade cycle? Apple may decide to upgrade the memory to 512 MB in the iPad similar to the way they do minor updates to the Mac OS X computers.

I don't know if that will happen this year, since it is obvious Apple is having trouble just keeping up with the iPad and iPhone 4 supply, but I wouldn't be surprised if the iPad got an upgrade to 512 MB in November-ish, or just into the new year.

Plus, it may actually cost no more money in the long run if they have the same package for the Ipad and iPhone for the A4/RAM due to volume runs.
post #39 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by complicity View Post

The HTC Desire has 576MB RAM and a 1GHz processor. Specs here:

http://www.htc.com/www/product/desir...ification.html

By going to 512MB rather than 256MB, Apple's just playing catchup.

The iPhone 4 has front and back glass and a stainless steel frame in a very slim, sleek package. To me, this is much more important than raw specs.

The HTC "Desire" is a fat, ugly piece of plastic. The extra 64MB RAM don't make up for this huge difference in build quality.

It's really sad for HTC and co. They are typically presented at a crappy provider stand in a mall where they use inoperable dummy phones with a printed display "simulation" vs. the real, working iPhones in the nice, contemporary, dare I say high-end looking Apple store, even in a mall.

Difficult to evoke desire for a cheap feeling HTC dummy phone if there are sleek, shiny, working iPhones in the Apple store... (do Best Buy and co actually use those crappy dummy phones for iPhones or does Apple not allow them to deface their product this way?)
post #40 of 60
Any Best Buy or Future Shop (owned by Best Buy) here in Canada always has its own stand with a single iPhone in a dock that is fully working.

Some have it on 3G as well. I'm not sure if all of the do. They definitely have it hooked up to WiFi.

I HATE the dumb plastic play toys they have in cellular stores these days. What's the use of even having them there, in my opinion.
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