Let Room For More Create More Room On Your Phone [App Review]
Throughout various iterations of the Android OS and from experimenting with various ROMs, from the experimental to the stable, the one thing that remains constant, regardless of device and OS version, is the amount of space photos take up. As the megapixels increase, so does the space each photo requires, leading us in this evil circle of better photos on better phones that have more space for more apps but in the end, not really, because the darn photos take up all the space! Ok, so, yes there are memory cards but if you are the lucky owner of a new Galaxy S6, that is not an option. Sure, Dropbox, Google+ and other service will without a doubt backup your lovely photos but they continue to occupy space on your phone unless you manually fiddle around with file managers and such and manually delete the photos. In other words, the problem of ever decreasing space remains. However, salvation may be out there. A new app, aptly called Room For More, aims to solve this problem.
The idea behind Room for More is, as so often is the case with new apps, pretty simple. Provide a way to backup your photos in the cloud while at the same time deleting the images on your device and still allowing for easy access and sharing through the app. Together with ability to retrieve your images should you want to download or simply share them with others as well as a gallery function for both images and videos, Room for More provides the basic functionality you will need to manage your photos, both those on your device and those backed up, while not taking up precious memory on your phone.
Room for More is build around a Material design-esque layout. Within the menu of the app are the main viewing options for your photos: cloud, phone or both at the same time. This allows you to either browse just photos on your device, for example, or just the cloud (or both). You are also able to see how much memory you have left. Backups can, by the way, be limited to Wi-Fi only, which is great if you happen to have data caps on your mobile data plan.
The menu also provides access to your account balance, which shows how much of a credit your currently have on the account as well as the amount of space you are using in your cloud account (more about cloud space in a moment). In addition, there is an option that allows you to download your images and videos as a ZIP file, something that is accomplished by sharing a link when the ZIP file is available for download with your images.
Naturally, you can share images and videos on social media directly from the app as well. The one glaring omission would be some sort of web interface, something that Ive seen in one way or another in the apps I use for photos.
The Room for More cloud comes with standard free cloud storage of 1GB. For each additional GB you need to use, you pay 15 cents per month. Alternatively, you can pay an annual fee of $99 for unlimited storage.
The question is: is this good value? Lets check it out.
15 cents per GB per month comes out to $1.80/year per GB. The annual subscription of $99 is unlimited but if it wasnt, it would be good for 55GB of storage.
The direct competitors to Room for More are of course other established services that provide similar functionality to smartphone users. Since I use Google Plus and Dropbox on a daily basis, I will use them as examples but there are others as well.
Dropbox starts with 2GB free and you can earn up to 16GB by referring friends. I have made it to 6GB just from referrals alone. Dropbox Pro gives you 1,000GB at $9.99/month, or $120/year. Compared to Room for Mores unlimited storage for $99, Dropbox ends up being a little bit more expensive for large amounts of files. A bonus is that Dropbox also provides their own photo app (which I have not had a need to use) to make organization easier.
Google Plus Photos allows for unlimited backups as long as images are kept within a certain resolutions. Free space starts at 15GB. I currently have 17GB free, of which about half is used for my almost 8,000 smartphone photos (or rather, those that do not qualify for free storage). The first upgrade tier is $1.99/month for 100GB. Google matches Dropbox at the 1,000GB level but also goes much higher than that, to 10, 20 and even 30TB. Once again, all the other tiers are irrelevant when compared to Room for More since Room for More is unlimited at $99.
One new aspect of the value equation that has emerged since I initially started testing Room for More is the newly announced Google Photos. While before, photos of a lower resolution were free, all photos of 16MP (megapixels) or less can now be stored for free. Photos for most recent smartphones will easily fit within that limit, thereby making Google Photos a formidable competitor. In fact, many point and shoot cameras will fit within this resolution. Of course, you would still need to delete the photos from your phone every now and then.
What really differentiates Room for More from all the other players I have used is the freeing up of storage. For me, a multi-device user, some devices are more loaded with apps than others and invariably I come up against the warning of low storage, almost on a weekly basis. In fact, I have done so about half a dozen times just this past month alone. Sure, Google Photos allows for deleting photos from your device as well but it appears to be limited to when the app senses that space needs to be freed up. In other words, you are at the mercy of the app. If you need an extra GB right now for new apps or a movie download, Room for More will take you right there.not to mention, I pick what I actually want to move, so I have the freedom to do as I please with my photos. For me, Room for More has been a lifesaver in that sense. The nice thing for me is that since I usually dont move the photos until a day or so later (except when needed right away, which has happened on several occasions), they are usually already backed up to Google Photos, meaning I get the best of both worlds.
The question is whether freeing up storage in itself is enough to set Room for More apart from the rest. Before this app, I used to manually delete photos after I was sure that Google Plus and Dropbox did their auto-backup uploads. Sure, it was a bit of a hassle but in the end, in both instances they were immediately available for social sharing or local manipulation through Dropbox syncing. The pricing structure also means that Room For More is more competitive on the extreme end of the spectrum, where the all you can eat packaged for $99 easily beats all the other players by offering unlimited storage, especially if you have the latest devices with high MP cameras.
If there is one thing I miss it is a proper web interface to view and share my photos, as already mentioned above. Although the app is intended for your phone, quite often I sit and look through photos on my computer and having that online photo album would be great (future feature, perhaps?
As far as I am concerned, I plan on continuing to use Room for More in conjunction with Google Photos (and Dropbox to some extent) simply because the ability to delete when I want to and what I want to at a moments notice is extremely valuable to me. For the rest of you, you get your first GB of storage free so I suggest you give it a shotyouve got nothing to lose and if youre at all like me, youll love the delete on demand feature as you free up space on your device.
Let Room For More Create More Room On Your Phone
Room for More gives you the opportunity to take control over the space of your phone. Free up space on your phone whenever you want to by moving just the photos or videos that you want to into the cloud and then enjoy having more space available. The lack of a web interface and the recent introduction of Google Photos could pose stumbling blocks for some.