What Is a Megabyte?


Quick Answer

A megabyte is a unit of digital information that is often abbreviated as MB. It is equivalent to 1,000,000 or 1,048,576 bytes, depending on the volume or storage capacity being described.

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What Is a Megabyte?
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Full Answer

The difference in value arose from the varied convention systems being used. In the International System of Units, the unit prefix mega is used to denote a multiplier of 1,000,000 or 10^6. Hence, one megabyte is equal to 1,000,000 bytes. However, in the language of computers, the binary system is more commonly used and units of measurements are defined as multiples of 2. Therefore, in this system, a megabyte is equal to 1,048,576 or 2^20 bytes.

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