When it comes to technical terms, the difference between 'gigabit' vs. 'gigabyte' perplexes a lot of people. You are in the right place, though. This guide, with definitions, usage tips, and examples, will teach you the meaning of each term.
Before we get into it, do you need a quick answer?
If so, here it is:
There is much more to learn about these two terms. So, please stick around until the end of this post!
Both words are nouns used in computing to quantify measurements of data. The first is the smaller of the two and equal to one-eighth of a 'byte.' The latter equals 1,000 or, more specifically, 1,024 megabytes, or 1,073,741,824 bytes.
Computer systems use 1,024 instead of 1,000.
However, most resources say that:
You know that 'gigabit' and 'gigabyte' are data measurements. But do you know when you would use these terms?
We just switched to gigabit fiber optic internet. Surprisingly, it is noticeably faster than our previous broadband service, with download and upload speeds close to 1 Gbps.
For example, you might tell a customer service rep:
For example, you might ask someone:
Do you think a 500-gigabyte external memory drive is large enough, or should I get a terabyte of storage?
For example, I might say:
I knew I should have paid more for the iPhone with 256 gigabytes of internal storage. I purchased the 128-gigabyte version, and I've already run out of space.
'Gigabit' vs. 'gigabyte' are data measurements. A 'gigabit' is smaller than a 'gigabyte.' The 'gigabyte' abbreviation is GB, and for 'gigabit,' it is Gb.
When these terms first came into existence, the exact measurement of a 'gigabyte' was 1024 megabytes. Take a look at the table below to learn about other measurements and how they compare to a 'gigabit' vs. 'gigabyte':
The computer industry standardized the measurements so they would match their names. So, you may find information stating that a 'gigabyte' is 1,000 megabytes or that 1 gigabit is equal to 1,000 megabits.
Unless you check your internet speed or speak to someone about your download and upload speeds, you will likely never use 'gigabit.' 'Gigabyte' is a more common term. It is the unit of measurement for the internal storage in your phone.
It is also the measurement used to calculate internal memory in your Macbook or PC and other devices.
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, 'gigabit' means:
The same dictionary defines 'gigabyte' as:
Many proficient English speakers and writers mispronounce 'gigabit' vs. 'gigabyte.' If you are unsure how to pronounce these words, the guide below will help. And even if you think you know the correct pronunciation, take a look at the phonetic spellings below to ensure you are saying them correctly.
Now, read the sample sentences below to ensure you know how to use 'gigabit' vs. 'gigabyte.'
We reviewed a lot of information. So, here is a quick recap:
These terms are so similar in spelling and the way they sound that it might be challenging to remember the difference. But don't worry. You can come back to this page anytime to review this lesson.
You can also check out the other confusing word guides here to learn about other commonly misused English terms. Each post contains definitions, pronunciations, grammar rules, and tips you can apply to other words and sayings. So, they are a fantastic way to expand your vocabulary and improve your grammar.