We recently had a few customers asking where their 500Mb had vanished to! Intrigued, we asked for more information. You can read the results below...
Our models all come with 1 or 2 gigabytes of RAM. You'll see this referred to as 1Gb or 2Gb sometimes. If you remember there are close enough to 1000 megabytes (1024 or 2^10 to be precise) in a gigabyte, the numbers coming up in a moment will make more sense...
After checking where these customers had seen the total memory listed, we understood where the issue lay.
In both Android and OpenELEC (available on some of our dual boot systems) some of the memory/RAM is reserved for the system itself. Background system processes (some run continuously or frequently) and are integral to the system are not counted towards the memory use shown in both examples above. You can also see how much more RAM is free when using OpenELEC, compared to using Kodi within the Android operating system. As Android is a more comprehensive system, more background apps/processes are to be found.
You can see more about the application at https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=sa.ramtruth abc
If you would like to check for yourself, click the image above or below or https://droidbox.co.uk/how-to/how-to-easily-find-the-total-ram-on-your-android-device/ . (If you're already comfortable installing applications, search for RAM Truth at Google's Play Store, install and run!)
As you can see from the results, on this T8 Mini there was 304.68Mb of RAM reserved for the system. Add this on to the non-system application-accessible 1743.32Mb and you get 2048Mb (which is 2Gb).
Other devices will reported 1536Mb of RAM, with 512Mb (approximate in both cases) of System Reserved memory, similarly 1Gb devices will find different results, but the same mystery solved!