Written by Suryakanta Loha

We are very familiar with the term “(MB/Mb)ps”. It is used to measure the Internet connection speed. Actually it is the data rate unit. Data transfer rate is the average number of bits or data blocks per unit time passing through a communication link in a data transmission system.

Now when we write the term in English, the confusion arises, since it can be written as MBps or Mbps. Both the terms are different and meaningful too.

1) MBps and Mbps :

Here the two terms are different by the letter ‘B’ or ‘b’. They have different meanings also.
MBps => Mega Byte Per Second
Mbps => Mega Bit Per Second
Therefore, we can conclude,
‘B’ represents BYTE and ‘b’ represents BIT

2) Relation between Byte and Bit :
Bit = 0 or 1
Byte = 8 bits

Then, 1B (Byte) =8b (bit)
Now, 1 MBps = 8 Mbps

3) Multiples of bit

3.1) Decimal Multiple of bits
The decimal multiples of bit are, kilobit (Kb), Megabit (Mb) , Gigabit (Gb) , etc
1 kb = 1^3 bits = (1000÷8) Bytes = 125 bytes
1Mb = 10^6 bits = 125×10^3 Bytes
1Gb = 10^9 bits = 125×10^6 Bytes

    3.2) Binary multiple of bit

The binary multiples of bit is kibibit (kibit), Mebibit (Mibit), Gibibit (Gibit) etc

1kibit = 1024 bits = (1024÷8) bytes = 128 bytes
1Mibit = 1024^2 bits = 128×1024 bytes
1 Gibit = 1024^3 bits = 128×1024^2 bytes

4) Multiples of Byte


   4.1) Decimal multiples of byte 

Decimal multiples of byte are kilobyte (kB), Megabyte (MB), Gigabyte (GB) etc

1kB = 10^3 Bytes = 8×10^3 bits = 8 kb
1MB = 10^6 Bytes =8×10^6 bits = 8Mb
1GB = 10^9 Bytes =8×10^9 bits = 8Gb

  4.2) Binary multiples of Bytes

Binary multiples of Byte are
kibibyte (kiB), Mebibyte (MiB), Gibibyte (GiB) etc
1kiB = 1024 B = 1024×8 b = 8 kib
1MiB = 1024^2 B = 1024^2×8 = 8 Mib
1GiB = 1024^3 B = 1024^3×8 = 8Gib

5) Bits (b) and Bytes (B) rate

bit/s and Byte/s are common data rate units. Similarly Mbps and MBps both can be used for measuring the rate of data transferring.

‌Networks only worry about single transmission of bit only but hard disc or devices require full bytes (i.e., 8 bits at once) to make a sense data. Bytes are group of 8 bits. Network doesn’t care if they are grouped together in six or eight or ten or two. It transmit single bit only. Here smallest unit is a single bit.

‌Chip or hard drives can read bytes at a time and can’t separate bits.
So, fundamental addressable storage unit in computer can’t directly access a storage unit smaller than byte. If we want to separate or know about specific bit in a byte, we have to do an additional operation to isolate them. So here smallest unit is byte.

6) Uses

‌Since network can read bits, so data rate of computer network ( download or upload speed) is measured in bps or kbps or Mbps etc
‌ Bytes are also used for file size, or the amount of data transferred by one device to another ( as MB, GB, or MBps, etc)
If we download a file from Internet or transfer data from one device to another then our connection speed is megabit/s (Mbps) but we are downloading or transferring megabytes (MB)

7) Clarification

When we download or transfer a file, the file is of certain MB (megabyte) (say 2 MB) and if the transferring or downloading speed be 2Mbps ( its megabit per second), so it take 8 sec to download or transfer the file (not 1 sec)
Similarly, 1 Mbps Internet speed can’t download 1 MB file in 1 sec, since, 1 Mbps = 1/8 MBps, it takes 8 sec.
Similarly, 16 Mbps plan allows us to download maximum 2 MB file in 1sec.

‌ Many people suspect that, thus is just people being tricked by ISP’s by using the unit Mbps since it sounds eight times bigger than the MBps

But, this unit is being used from 1970 by Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering. Since data is routed between devices in small chunk of data known as bits. This was then a standard measurement at the Internet inception as most of data files were significantly smaller.

About the author

Suryakanta Loha

Suryakanta Louha is the part time Author of the website “”.
He is a student of Bachelor of Science. He is here to share what he learns new. He likes to learn new things and like to share clear concepts what he learned. He is in our blog to share a little knowledge.


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