iPad 32GB vs 128GB: How Much Storage Do You Need?

Several versions of the iPad are available on the market and each type offers different storage options. Some Apple tablets have 32GB as their smallest storage capacity while others go up to a hefty 1TB. For this comparison guide, we’re focusing on the minimal 32GB and the moderate 128GB with the latter costing only slightly more. If you had to choose from only these two choices, which do you think would give better value for money? Let’s find out.

iPad 32GB vs 128GB Comparison Chart

Model iPad 2018 WiFi 32GB iPad 2018 WiFi 128GB
Apple iPad 9.7in 6th Generation WiFi + Cellular (32GB, Space Gray) (Renewed) Apple iPad with WiFi, 128GB, Space Gray (2018 Model) (Renewed) 
PriceCheck Price Check Price 

Weight1.05 lb1.05 lb
Dimensions9.45 x 6.67 x 0.30 inches 9.45 x 6.67 x 0.30 inches
ProcessorApple A10 FusionApple A10 Fusion
Battery 8,827 mAh 8,827 mAh
RuntimeUp to 10 hours Up to 10 hours
Rear Camera 8 MP 8 MP
Front Camera1.2MP1.2MP
Video Recording 1280×720 @ 30 fps 1280×720 @ 30 fps
Internal Storage32GB128GB

Cloud Storage

It will not be necessary to get the 128GB iPad if you’re planning to integrate with cloud services extensively.

ipad 2018 icloud
Cloud integration adds storage space in using the iPad (32GB)

Apple offers numerous options for integrating with cloud services, including iCloud, Google Drive, One Drive and DropBox. The Files app on the iPad allows you to manage all of your files in one place too. In this way, the iPad 32GB option could be enough for your needs.

iCloud gives free and unlimited storage for content purchased through iTunes as well. These include apps from the App Store, TV shows, movies, iTunes music and iBooks. Plus, there is separate 5GB storage for iCloud Drive, iCloud Music Library, iCloud Photo Library, data and backups. What’s more, additional iCloud storage can be purchased at low prices.

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A 128GB iPad gives you more space for storing media content offline though an iPad 32GB is acceptable for streaming.

ipad 2018 media
If you stream rather than store, an iPad 32GB offers enough storage

A standard definition (SD) iTunes movie takes up 1 to 3GB of space while a high definition (HD) movie is 3 to 6GB in size. TV shows are half the size of movies but have numerous episodes. Meanwhile, music files are generally small but tend to add up if downloaded by the album. A 128GB iPad is able to accommodate all of these and more.

If you mostly stream through Spotify, Pandora, HBO, Amazon, Netflix, Home Sharing or Apple Music, iPad 32GB storage is acceptable. These apps also offer localized offline storage options for when you’re travelling. These allow you to download a select few items that you can delete later on so internal storage won’t get full.

Photos & Videos

When you need to store a lot of photos and videos on your tablet, a 32GB iPad will quickly get filled to capacity.

ipad 2018 photos & videos
Need to store a lot of photos and videos on your device? Buy the iPad 128GB

The 9.7-inch iPad is equipped with an 8-megapixel rear camera and 1.2-megapixel front camera. Video recording is at 1280×720 @ 30 fps. Taking a few photos and videos with the iPad itself shouldn’t take up 32GB. Anyway, you can offload multimedia content to the cloud.

128GB storage is required if you’re planning to edit with your iPad. When you use your tablet in conjunction with an advanced camera, a larger storage size is necessary. This is because the files generated by a DSLR or mirrorless camera are generally bigger than those from the iPad.

Games & Apps

Creative types and gamers will benefit from the greater capacity of a 128GB iPad.

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ipad 2018 gaming
A 128GB iPad is more suitable for gamers and creative types

Apple and other developers try to keep apps light but programs are increasing in complexity. Sooner or later, an iPad (32GB) will be packed with game packs, updates and graphics-intensive apps. This is especially true for users who are gamers or are the creative types.

To perform graphics-heavy design work on the iPad, 128GB should be the baseline for storage space plus an iCloud plan. A 32GB iPad is good enough for casual games and social media apps though.


When choosing between an iPad 32GB or 128GB, it’s wiser to pick the 128GB option. Paying slightly more for greater storage will be worth it in the long run, especially since there are no expandable memory options available.

You can save money with the iPad 32GB but you’ll have to be mindful about your files. Having 128GB from the beginning means you can download games, movies and other content without much worry about full storage. This makes a 128GB iPad more forward-thinking and convenient to use than the 32GB one.

Last update on 2020-04-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Arcel G