Apps & Software


Gmail and memory usage - is that really necessary?


While preparing the purchase of a new computer I was trying to figure out how much RAM memory I really need. When diving in the Windows Task Manager I noticed that Chrome (or Edge, it doesn't make a lot of difference) is by far the most memory hungry program. A rough sketch:

  • MS Outlook 2013: about 60MB
  • IBM SPSS Statistics with a 10k row datafile: about 170 MB
  • MS Word with a complex Word document open: about 125 MB
  • Chrome with TWO tabs open and a bunch of extentions: about 680 MB, of which the Gmail tab takes 191 MB but you need two other processes that together take about 300MB.

This means that I would be able to run a nice set of powerful professional programs and could easily suffice with 4GB, but I would need a powerful computer with at least 8GB to be able to comfortably surf on the internet? How did we end up in that situation?

It also means that reading Gmail in the browser takes 300MB, while it takes almost nothing running in the complex program Outlook is.

Why do we need so much memory to run a web page? Isn't it better to use Gmail in Outlook? Or any other mail program?