I bought an Android 4.1.1 tablet, the ad said "comes with 8 GB". But when I go to the system configuration I get:

1,18 GB total
Apps 0,90 GB
Available 161 MB

Total 4,55 GB
Free 4,17 GB

I ask the vendor where is the 8 GB, and they said: "the tablet comes with physical 8GB, but the Android System makes a partition for different purposes (Recovery, Loader, Apps, etc.) letting available for the user only 4 GB. The others partitions are not visible for the user. This is the same for all Android devices".

They are telling me the truth? or just are a bunch of liars and sold me an 4GB tablet ?

Android 4.1.1
Core 3.0.8+
Compilation P758.
Brand: NOBLEX - Model: T7014AR
(official specification: RAM 1GB - Internal 8GB)

Thanks a lot.


u0_a78@android:/ $ df
Filesystem             Size   Used   Free   Blksize
/dev                  443.2M  36.0K  443.2M   4096
/mnt/asec             443.2M  0.0 K  443.2M   4096
/mnt/obb              443.2M  0.0 K  443.2M   4096
/system               607.4M  440.2M  167.2M  1024
/data                 1.2 G   1.0 G  153.8M   4096
/cache                629.9M  16.5M  613.4M   4096
/mnt/external_sd      941.7M  16.0K  941.7M   16384
/mnt/sdcard           4.5 G   382.1M  4.2 G   8192
/mnt/secure/asec: Permission denied
/mnt/asec/com.robotinvader.fooding-1  36.5M  34.8M  1.7 M   4096
/mnt/asec/com.vkcode.SpaceTube-1  14.2M  12.6M  1.6 M   4096
1|u0_a78@android:/ $

3 Answers 3


Yes, you have an 8GB tablet. How Android partitioning works is there is a NAND flash chip, and then it's basically split up into system storage (/system) and otherwise, and user accessible storage (/data) and possibly (in some cases), /sdcard (note that I'm talking about the emulated legacy SD Card, not your expansion slot.

So, when they say it's an 8GB tablet, they're correct.


Looking at your df output... Blksize refers to the maximum length, in bytes, of a file storage block. You don't have to worry about that column. What we're focused on is all the other partitions. Let's start at the top:

/dev contains device nodes. Don't worry about the reported size - it has no effect on your storage.

/mnt/asec and /mnt/obb are each partitioned with 443.2MB. With those two partitions (required by the system), you have 886.4MB, rounding up.

/system (where Android lives) is partitioned at 607.4MB, which will bring our total up to 1.5GB.

/data is where all user preferences and settings are stored. When you do a factory reset, you are wiping the /data partition. Adding in the 1.2GB from there, we have a total of 2.7GB.

/cache is also required by Android, and with a 629.9MB partition, we're at 3.3GB.

/mnt/external_sd is your external SD card. Forget about that for now.

/mnt/sdcard is the internal SD card - a partition of user accessible storage in the internal memory. It's set at 4.5GB - which is what your vendor is reporting.

Add all these partitions together, and we have a total of 7.8GB which is correct for an 8GB tablet.

Storage manufacturers report storage in decimal, meaning 1000MB = 1GB. However, in binary, 1024MB = GB, so that's why you have a discrepancy.

  • Thanks pal. There is any app to let me know the real physical memory? All apps I tried get only 4GB!! Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 12:27
  • Hm. Good question. I personally don't know of any, sorry! Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 12:46
  • 1
    df on the terminal/command-line? Feel free to ask that as a separate question, as that's how this site works: one question per "page" :) But make sure to not ask "is there an app, but rather "Is there any way to...", as it otherwise might be considered off-topic (see our help center) ;)
    – Izzy
    Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 15:22
  • AH! YES! df would do the trick! Good idea Izzy. Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 15:25
  • Thanks @Izzy I just updated the original question with the df Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 20:08

Yes, that is correct. I have a Nexus 4 16GB and only get around about 12GB for actual usage. Android system consists of lots of native applications, specifically speaking Google apps like Gmail, Maps, Drive etc. etc. I'm not sure if you can uninstall those, but if you can you'd gain some little storage. But Yes, out of 8GB usually user will get 4~5GB for storage which is a shame. Also I think now 8GB tablets are decreasing. Best workaround to is to check if your tablet supports USB OTG (USB On-the-go) mode, so you can extend your storage as required.

  • Much appreciate, mate. The same question to you: there is any app to let me know the real physical memory? All apps I tried get only 4GB!! Thanks again. Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 12:49
  • I use an app called Disk Usage. But unfortunately it needs root to show space from system partitions. There is another application called Storage Analyser which will show you total space on individual partitions which you can sum up manually to verify. Also note 16GB won't mean actual 16GB it'll be ~15GB or such.
    – PsyGik
    Commented Jul 29, 2014 at 12:56
  • Yeah the S4 has "16" but you get 9. Also when they say Gb they often don't mean 1024 Mb (and a Megabye should be 1024 Kb etc) they just use 1000. So 1 Kb = 1000 bytes, 1 Mb = 1000 Kb etc and it's a total scam IMHO.
    – RossC
    Commented Jul 30, 2014 at 15:06

This is normal. My LG G2 phone has 32 GB of storage, but only 24 GB was available, when I unboxed it.

The automobile industry could really learn from this.

Customer: "The car only goes 240 km/h, while you advertised it as capable of 320 km/h??"

BMW: "It is overhead. Live with it"

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