KB, MB, and GB are the common units of information volume used in computer storage. A bit is the smallest unit of information. It is either a 0 or 1. You can count bits, but it’s not very practical since humans don’t have 10 fingers.

A byte is the next smallest unit and is equal to 8 bits. All other units of information are derived from bits and bytes and represent a certain number of bits (or bytes).

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There is a difference between** KB and MB **and between **MB and GB**. The following table shows the relationship between these three terms:

1KB = 1,024 bytes = 2^10 = 1024 bytes

1MB = 1,048,576 bytes = 2^20 = 1,048,576 bytes

1GB = 1,073,741,824 bytes = 2^30 = 1,073,741,824 bytes

In simple words, each successive term indicates a tenfold increase in the number of **bits or bytes.**

KB and MB are quite often used for file sizes. However, even if you’re not a computer geek, there is no way to confuse the two because they are always written as uppercase. And they are never abbreviated (at least not in general use).

There is one exception where these units of measurement get mixed up, though. That is when you’re dealing with processor speeds. For example, a 2 GHz processor can be either 2 GHz or 2.048 GHz depending on context.

In those situations, it’s important to know that 1 GHz = 109 Hz and 1 GHz = 1000 MHz (106 Hz).

But if you’re just looking at a **computer **file size, don’t worry about this little bit of confusion. You’ll never see KB or MB written as kB or Mb so there’s nothing to worry about there.

**KB versus MB**. Both of these units are common when talking about storage space or file size. But which is which, and why do they use different abbreviations?

For starters, it’s important to know that a **byte (B) is made up of 8 bits (b)**, and a **bit is the smallest unit of computer data**. A **byte can have a value of either 0 or 1**, but both bits together can represent any number from **0 to 255**.

The **“K”** in **Kb **stands for **kilo**, which means one thousand. So one kilobyte **(KB)** is equal to 1,024 bytes, or 2 to the 10th power in base-10 math.

The **“M” in Mb** stands for **mega**, which means one **million**. **One megabyte (MB) is equal to 1,048,576 bytes **or 2 to the 20th power in base-10 math. To convert between the two units all you need to do is divide by 1,024 or multiply by 1,048,576. For example:

1 MB = 1,048,576 bytes = 2^20 /1024/1024 bytes

1 KB = 1024 bytes = 2^10 /1024/1024 bytes

To convert from KB to MB multiply by 1

Symbol | What it is | How it is read | How it is used | Sample expression |

+ | Addition sign Logical OR symbol | … plus … … or … | Sum of a few values Logical disjunction | 3 + 5 = 8 ¬(A + B) = ¬A * ¬B |

* | Multiplication sign Logical AND symbol | … times … … and … | Product of two values Logical conjunction | 3 x 5 = 15 ¬(A * B) = ¬A + ¬B |

x | Multiplication sign | … times … | Product of two values | 3 x 5 = 15 |

· | Multiplication sign | … times … | Product of two values | 3 · 5 = 15 |

summation sign | The summation of … | Sum of many or infinitely many values | ||

Integral sign | The integral of … | integration | x^{2} dx = x^{3}/3 + c | |

Double integral sign | The double integral of … | integration | f(x,y) dx dy | |

Triple integral sign | The triple integral of … | integration | f(x,y,z) dx dy dz | |

Line integral sign | The line integral of … | integration | F dx | |

Surface integral sign | The surface integral of … | integration | F(x,y,z) dx dy | |

– | Subtraction sign Minus sign | … minus … Negative… | Difference of two values, negative number | 3 – 5 = -2 |

± | Plus/minus sign | … plus or minus … | Expression of range, error, or tolerance | 500 kbps ± 10% |

dot product sign | … dot … | Scalar (dot) product of two vectors | A B = B A | |

x | Cross product sign | … cross … | Vector (cross) product of two vectors | A x B = – (B x A) |

Product sign | The product of … | Product of three up to infinitely many values | ||

^ | Carat | … to the power of … | exponent | 2 ^ 5 = 32 |

! | Exclamation | … factorial | Product of all positive integers up to a certain value | 5! = 120 |

Surd | … root of … | Algebraic expressions | z = (x + y) | |

Square root symbol | The square root of … | Algebraic expressions | ||

… | Continuation sign | … and so on up to … … and so on indefinitely | Extension of sequence | = {1, 2, 3, …}S |

/ | Slash | … divided by … … over … | Division | 3/4 = 0.75 |

÷ | Division sign | … divided by … | Division | 3 ÷ 4 = 0.75 |

Percent symbol | … percent … | Proportion | 0.032 = 3.2 | |

Per mil symbol | … per mil … | Proportion | 0.032 = 32 | |

: | Colon, ratio sign | … is to … … such that … … it is true that … | Division or ratio, symbol following logical quantifier or used in defining a set | 2:4 = 20:40x : x > 4 and x < 5x : x < 0 or x > -1S = {x : x < 3} |

| | Vertical line | … such that … …it is true that … | Symbol following logical quantifier or used in defining a set | x | x > 4 and x < 5x | x < 0 or x > -1S = {x | x < 3} |

:: | Double colon | … averaged with … | arithmetic mean | 3 :: 11 = 7 |

lemniscate | … infinity … increases without limit | Infinite summations Infinite sequence Limit | x : x < | |

( ) | Parentheses | …quantity… …list… …set of coordinates… …open interval | Denotes a quantity, list, set of coordinates, or an open interval | (x + y) + z( a_{1}, a_{2}, a_{3}, a_{4})( x,y,z)(3,5) |

[ ] | Square brackets | … the quantity … … the closed interval … | Denotes a quantity or a closed interval | w + [(x + y) + z][3,5] |

( ] | Hybrid brackets | … the half-open interval … | Denotes a half-open interval | (3,5] |

[ ) | Hybrid brackets | … the half-open interval … | Denotes a half-open interval | [3,5) |

{ } | Curly brackets | … the quantity … … the SET … | Denotes a quantity or a SET | E = {2, 4, 6, 8, …} |

= | Equal sign | … equals … | Indicates two values are the same | -(-5) = 5 2 z^{2} + 4z – 6 = 0 |

proportionality sign | … is proportional to … | Indicates two variables change in direct proportion | x y | |

~ | Similarity sign | … is similar to … | Indicates two objects are geometrically similar | ABC ~ DEF |

Approximate equal sign | … is approximately equal to … | Indicates two values are close to each other | x + y z | |

Inequality sign | … is not equal to … | Indicates two values are different | x y | |

< | Inequality sign | … is less than … | Indicates value on left is smaller than value on right | 3 < 5x < y |

Inequality sign | … is less than or equal to … … is at most equal to … | Indicates value on left is smaller than or equal to value on right | x y | |

> | Inequality sign | … is greater than … | Indicates value on left is larger than value on right | 5 > 3x > y |

≥ | Inequality sign | … is greater than or equal to … | Indicates value on left is larger than or equal to value on right | x ≥ y |

| | | absolute value sign | The absolute value of … | Distance of value from origin in number line, plane, or space | | -3 | = 3 |

increment sign, Triangle symbol | the change in … triangle … | Indicates a small change, Denotes vertices of the triangle | m = y / xABC = DEF | |

Perpendicularity symbol | … is perpendicular to … | Geometry | L M | |

// | Parallel symbol | … is parallel to … | Geometry | L // M |

Angle symbol | Angle … | Geometry | ABC = DEF | |

Existential quantifier | For some … There exists a(n) … | Logical statements | x : x > 4 and x < 5 | |

Universal quantifier | For all … For every … | Logical statements | x : x < 0 or x > -1 | |

¬ | Logical negation symbol | not … | Logical statements | ¬(¬A) A |

logical implication symbol | … implies … If … then … | Logical statements | A B | |

logical equivalence symbol | … is logically equivalent to … … if and only if .. | Logical statements | A B | |

Three dots | … therefore … … it follows that … | Logical statements or mathematical proofs | x = y and y = zx = z | |

Element-of symbol | … is an element of a set … | Sets | a A | |

Not-element-of symbol | … is not an element of a set … | Sets | b A | |

Subset symbol | … is a subset of … | Sets | A B | |

Proper subset symbol | … is a proper subset of … | Sets | A B | |

Union symbol | … union … | Sets | A B = B A | |

Intersection symbol | … intersect … … intersected with … | Sets | A B = B A | |

Null symbol | The null set The empty set | Sets | = { } | |

Hebrew aleph (uppercase) | Aleph … | Transfinite cardinal | _{1} + _{0} = _{1} | |

º | Degree symbol | … degree(s) | Angular measure Temperature | T = +20 ºC |

θ | Greek theta (lowercase) | … theta … | Angular variable | θ = 90º |

φ | Greek phi (lowercase) | … phi … | Angular variable | = 45º |

λ | Greek lambda (lowercase) | … lambda … | Wavelength Ratio Eigenvalue Lebesgue measure | = 70 cm = 3:1 |

µ | Greek mu (lowercase) | micro- (10^{-6}) | Prefix multiplier | C = 0.001 µF |

Greek pi (lowercase) | … pi … | General science | 3.14159 | |

Greek omega (uppercase) | … omega … | The volume of an object Ohms (resistance) | R_{2} = 330 | |

Greek omega (lowercase) | … omega … | Transfinite ordinal Angular velocity Period | = 36,000 rad/s = 1/60 s | |

, N | Enhanced or bold N | The set of natural numbers | Number theory Set theory | = {0, 1, 2, 3, …} |

, Z | Enhanced or bold Z | The set of integers | Number theory Set theory | = {0, 1, -1, 2, -2, 3, -3, …} |

, Q | Enhanced or bold Q | The set of rational numbers | Number theory Set theory | = {a/b | a and b are in } |

, R | Enhanced or bold R | The set of real numbers | Number theory Set theory | What is the cardinality of ? |

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