A frequent complaint about Google Nexus smartphones and tablets is that they don’t have removable memory card slots. Matias Duarte, the man at Google responsible for developing Android’s user experience, has the answer: the company thinks they are too confusing.
Duarte posted the following comments on Google+:
“Everybody likes the idea of having an SD card, but in reality it’s just confusing for users.
“If you’re saving photos, videos or music, where does it go? Is it on your phone? Or on your card? Should there be a setting? Prompt everytime? What happens to the experience when you swap out the card? It’s just too complicated.
“We take a different approach. Your Nexus has a fixed amount of space and your apps just seamlessly use it for you without you ever having to worry about files or volumes or any of that techy nonsense left over from the paleolithic era of computing.
“With a Nexus you know exactly how much storage you get upfront and you can decide what’s the right size for you. That’s simple and good for users.”
The Android operating system supports removable memory cards, and most device makers include them as a matter of course. But tablets and smartphones created in collaboration with Google for the Nexus line do not.
Apple also eschews card slots on its iPad and iPhone. Microsoft, on the other hand, just added support for them to Windows Phone 8, and they frequently appear in Windows-based tablets.