International Samsung Galaxy S4-Battery

Many Samsung fans are none too pleased about the 16GB Galaxy S4’s storage limits—around half is currently user-accessible. But Samsung is biting back, defending the situation by instructing users to purchase a microSD card to mitigate the situation. With so many new features being introduced into the equation, and a higher resolution screen, is it really a surprise so much of the 16GB of storage is taken?

“For the Galaxy S4 16GB model, approximately 6.85GB occupies (the) system part of internal memory, which is 1GB bigger than that of the Galaxy S III, in order to provide (a) high resolution display and more powerful features to our consumers,” Samsung said in a statement to CNET.

Although Samsung does allow the flexibility of a microSD slot, apps cannot be installed on the expandable storage—only outside media (music, photos, and text) can be put onto that card. That means if you’re an app hoarder, you’ll have to be particularly careful when going on download binges, otherwise onboard storage will fill up quite fast. As CNET points out, a game like Real Racing 3 takes up 1.2GB of storage.

Of course, users will be able to root the device to get around the storage limits, but that’s not necessarily a universal remedy, especially for the average consumer. Still, the microSD slot does support cards up to 64GB, so S4 owners can essentially get more storage than competing devices such as the HTC One or iPhone 5. However, that might necessarily be much consolation when the device is advertised as having 16GB of storage—it does, but not every last MB is available to the owner.