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Increasing RAM on Android: how and why it works

Increasing RAM on Android: how and why it works
Smartphone manufacturers are releasing more and more devices in which virtual RAM expansion is available. From recent examples, Honor X8 can be distinguished, in which you can add another 2 GB to the existing 6 GB of “RAM”. What this option is and how it functions will be explained below.

What is virtual RAM?

Standard RAM is a temporary digital storage where the data of games and programs running on the device at the moment is placed. It is this data that the chipset and the kernel of the device's OS access, even if the application has been minimized for some time and is running in the background.

Virtual RAM is no different from the standard one in terms of functionality, however, it uses the internal memory of the smartphone as storage.

Increasing RAM on Android: how and why it works

Operating principle

Virtual memory has long been available in personal computers - there it is called a swap or paging file. It also functions on smartphones, to activate it, you need to go to the settings, after which several gigabytes will be reserved from the internal storage. It is important to remember that Android does not have dynamic RAM expansion by default, but the manufacturer can add such a feature on its own. In the same Honor X8, you can take 2 GB from the available 128 GB, which affects the amount of free space slightly.

Virtual memory does not completely replace permanent RAM, since the read and write speed of the drive is lower than these parameters for RAM. Nevertheless, there is still a benefit from it.

In the event that the physical RAM runs out, the system can connect a virtual one to the case and with its help it gets the opportunity to save data from small and rarely used applications. Thus, in the standard RAM there is more room for games, productive applications and the operation of the OS.

Why is it necessary?

Virtual RAM is useful primarily for devices in the mid-budget segment with a relatively small amount of RAM. Today's games and software require more and more resources, and devices with a small amount of RAM find it difficult to multitask and keep running background applications.

Increasing the amount of standard RAM will increase the cost of the smartphone. Therefore, virtual memory is an acceptable option for manufacturers to avoid unnecessary development costs.
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