Does a full internal storage increase the weight of a mobile phone?

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There are billions of mobile phone users all over the world thus tech experts get to answer a lot of questions every day. While some of these questions are expected, others are really weird. In recent times, there have been questions as to whether loading the mobile phone with data actually increases its weight. If we want to speak from our experience with our phones, then the answer is a direct NO. Also, the weight of a mobile phone is determined by the materials used in its construction, such as the metal and plastic components, the battery, and the screen.

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Practically, the amount of data stored on the phone does not directly affect its weight. This is because the data is stored in a non-physical form on the phone’s internal storage or external memory card. This is quite different from ink on paper which could clearly increase the weight of the paper even if it’s by a little. However, here is a practical response to the weird question

Theoretical response

When we write data into the flash memory chip of the mobile phone, we are essentially switching the potential state in the flash memory chip. Different potentials correspond to different states, for example, the low potential is 0 and the high potential is 1. In different potential states, the energy of the system as a whole is different. In this way, we can use the mass-energy equation E=mc to calculate the weight of information.

John D. Kubiatowicz, a computer scientist at the University of California, Berkeley, has analyzed the weight of data in this way. The result of his calculation is that the energy difference brought by every 1 bit of information is about 10^-15 joules. When converted into mass, it is about 10^-32 kilograms. Generally speaking, a mobile phone with a capacity of 256GB can store about 200GB of data. This means that when it is full, the weight of the mobile phone will increase by 2 x 10^-21 kg. Even a speck of dust is hundreds of millions of times heavier than this data. Thus, we can simply say that storing data on a mobile phone does not increase its weight.

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Indirect effect

As mentioned earlier, the amount of data stored on a mobile phone does not directly affect its weight. The weight of a mobile phone is determined by its physical components. Such components include battery, screen, and other hardware components.

However, it is worth noting that the amount of data stored on a mobile phone can indirectly affect its weight in a few ways. Firstly, if a user stores large files such as videos or photos on their phone, they may need to charge their phone more frequently, which can result in carrying a heavier charger or power bank. This is because larger files consume more battery power when they are accessed or played on the phone.

Secondly, if a user stores a large amount of data on their phone, they may need to upgrade to a phone with more storage capacity. A phone with more storage capacity may have a larger battery or other components to support the additional storage space. This could make the phone heavier overall. Apart from these indirect weight increases, there is no direct link between the amount of data on a phone and its weight. At least, nothing significant.


There is absolutely no correlation between the amount of data stored on mobile phones and the weight of the device. If there is any link, it is completely external and indirect. This is because a user may need accessories if the phone holds more data which consumes more resources.

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