Along with RAM and processor upgrades, the adoption of UFS means the Pixel 4a will be meaningfully faster than the 3a.

What you need to know

  • Google’s Pixel 4a will come equipped with faster UFS storage.
  • Along with the Pixel 4a’s 6GB of RAM and Snapdragon 730, this represents a substantial upgrade over the 3a.
  • UFS storage will provide SSD like speeds for Google’s budget phone, meaning apps and games will launch faster.

Google’s Pixel 4a is round the corner, and we’re getting a few more peeks into the hardware updates this thing is getting. Already we know the RAM is getting bumped up to 6GB and the processor is being updated to a Snapdragon 730, but Google is making it faster with one more crucial spec — the storage.

In the Pixel 4a “review” video posted earlier this week (credits to the folks at XDA Developers for spotting this), the specs for the Pixel include UFS storage as opposed to the eMMc storage equipped with the Pixel 3a. No, those aren’t just random letters. EMMC refers to an embedded MultiMediaCard as opposed to UFS (Universal Flash Storage) which is used in flagship smartphones.

Why should you care? Android Central’s Harish Jonnalagadda explains:

UFS was primarily designed to deliver SSD-like speeds on mobile devices. The first-gen UFS modules offered three times faster file copying times, as well as vast improvements in multitasking over eMMC modules. UFS is able to do this as it is a full duplex standard, meaning it can read and write data simultaneously. By contrast, eMMC can only read or write data at any given time.

In essence, your media will load up faster, your apps will start faster, your games will resume faster and so on. There’d only so much software can do to make a phone feel smooth, and when t comes to the Pixel 4a, Google seems to be trying to make sure the hardware doesn’t fall too far behind as well.

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