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bps / Bps


Definition: Network performance has traditionally been measured in units of bits per second (bps). Not too many years ago, dialup network connections routinely performed at 9600 bps. As networks have greatly improved in performance, rates are now specified in Kbps (thousands of bps) or Mbps (millions of bps).

Bps (with uppercase 'B') represents bytes per second. Use of Bps, KBps, or MBps is avoided in networking as computer architectures implement a byte with differing numbers of bits; some use four bits, most use eight bits, and a few use neither.

Because eight-bit byte computer architectures are the only kind in common use today, converting from Bps to bps involves only multiplying by eight. However, it's too easy to confuse the two acronyms and best to use 'bps' consistently.

Also Known As: bits per second, bits/sec, bits/s; bytes per second, bytes/sec, bytes/s

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