What is a gigabyte (GB)?

A gigabyte (GB) -- pronounced with two hard Gs -- is a unit of data storage capađô thị that is roughly equivalent to lớn 1 billion bytes. In decimal notation (base 10), a gigabyte is exactly 1 billion bytes. In binary notation (base 2), a gigabyte is equal lớn 230 bytes, or 1,073,741,824 bytes. Giga comes from a Greek word meaning giant. Werner Buchholz is credited with coining the term byte in 1956, while helping thiết kế IBM"s 7030 Stretch, the first transistorized supercomputer.Quý khách hàng đang xem: What does 1gb get you? điện thoại mạng internet explained

A gigabyte has been a common unit of capacity measurement for data storage products since the mid-1980s. In recent years, terabytes (TB) have sầu become a more common unit of storage capađô thị measurement, especially for hard disk drives (HDDs) và solid-state drives (SSDs).

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Cloud providers và hardware vendors still often refer to lớn storage capađô thị costs in terms of the amount per gigabyte, although that"s been slowly transitioning khổng lồ costs per terabyte. Today"s HDDs & flash SSDs can easily store hundreds of gigabytes of data or even thousands, which is why the TB label has been steadily replacing GB in many instances.

What is a gigabyte in simple terms?

A gigabyte is a specific unit of data that"s equal to lớn about 1 billion bytes of data. The term gigabyte is typically used to describe the amount of stored data or the capathành phố of a storage device.

For example, an HDD might offer 500 GB of raw capađô thị but is currently storing only 200 GB of data. In addition to stored data, the gigabyte might also be used lớn refer to lớn the amount of transferred data or storage throughput.


What is a GB on a phone?

When purchasing smartphones, customers can often choose from multiple storage capacity options, which are typically based on available gigabytes. The more gigabytes, the higher the storage capacity -- và the higher the price tag.

For many customers, storage capađô thị is often one of the most important factors when choosing a phone. For example, Apple"s iPhone 13 Pro offers four capađô thị options -- 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB & 1 TB -- while Samsung"s Galaxy Z Flip3 5G offers only two options -- 128 GB or 256 GB. Most of today"s phones use gigabyte as the measure of storage capathành phố, but as the iPhone 13 Pro indicates, it might be just a matter of time before gigabyte is supplanted by terabyte.

Regardless of which storage options that customers choose, they should be aware that available capathành phố is often less than the total capađô thị. For example, an iPhone might use between 11 GB và 14 GB of storage space for iOS and the preinstalled apps -- the exact amount depends on the Model & settings. Software updates can also affect available capathành phố.

For instance, T-sản phẩm điện thoại offers the Essentials, Magenta and Magenta MAX plans. The Essentials plan provides 50 GB of data, the Magenta plan provides 100 GB and the MAX plan offers unlimited data. In addition, the Magenta plan gets up to lớn 5 GB of Mobile hotspot data, and the MAX plan gets 40 GB of high-speed data & unlimited data at 3G speeds.

In today"s market, gigabyte measures play an important role in choosing di động devices và services, but it might not be long before the discussion revolves around terabytes rather than gigabytes. Until then, customers should pay cthua attention lớn the GB options available for their di động devices.

Gigabyte history

The first gigabyte-capathành phố hard drive sầu was IBM 3380, which was introduced in 1980. IBM 3380 packaged two 1.26 GB hard disk assemblies in a refrigerator-sized cabinet. Pricing ranged from $81,000 to $142,000, depending on the configuration.

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When PCs were first introduced, HDDs were relatively small in terms of data capacity, and they were quite expensive. IBM Personal Computer XT, released in 1983, was the first PC with a built-in hard drive as a standard feature. It originally came with a 10 megabytes (MB) or trăng tròn MB hard drive. In 1991, the first 1 GB drives became available with a price tag of nearly $3,000.

From there, hard drive capathành phố grew rapidly, with prices dropping just as fast. When Hitađưa ra brought out the first 1 TB drive in 2007, the company noted that it took 35 years for HDDs to reach 1 GB & 14 years to get to 500 GB. The first 1 TB drives appeared only two years later.

Today, HDDs are available with 20 TB of storage, and SSDs can hold as much as 100 TB of storage.

Gigabyte vs. gigabit

A bit, which is short for binary digit, is the smallest unit of computer data. A bit has a single binary value that is either 0 or 1. Computers are generally designed khổng lồ store data and exexinh tươi instructions in bit multiples called bytes. In most computer systems, there are 8 bits in a byte and 8,589,934,592 bits in a gigabyte.

A byte -- and, by extension, a gigabyte -- typically describes data at rest, although it might also describe data being transferred between computer systems or lớn storage bandwidth or throughput. For example, computer memory & storage are often measured in bytes, such as a desktop with 16 GB of RAM & 750 GB of storage.

In many computer architectures, a byte is the smallest addressable unit of memory. For instance, an 820 MB hard drive sầu holds 8đôi mươi million bytes of data.

A bit -- và, by extension, a gigabit -- typically refers khổng lồ data being transmitted over a network. For instance, gigabits are used lớn describe data transfer rates, such as network throughput và mạng internet connection speeds, as in 10 gigabits per second or 10 Gigabit Ethernet.

Gigabyte-size storage options và pricing

Several types of storage truyền thông media provide gigabyte range capađô thị, và those capacities can vary dramatically. Some of the most commonly used storage types in this range include HDDs, flash drives, memory cards, USB memory sticks, Blu-ray discs & DVDs.

Price per gigabyte varies aao ước vendors and types of storage truyền thông. However, across all vendors and storage types, prices have sầu been falling year over year. For example, the average price per gigabyte of an HDD in 2000 was nearly $8, according khổng lồ IDC, but had dropped khổng lồ 3.5 cents per gigabyte by 2017. Now, there are HDDs that offer storage for under 2 cents per gigabyte.

However, the year-over-year decline in the average price per gigabyte for HDDs has slowed significantly in recent years.