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A kilobit (Kb or kbit) is a data measurement unit for digital information or computer storage. One kilobit equals one thousand (103 or 1,000) bits.
A kilobit is used to measure data rates in digital communication circuits (for example, 56 kilobits per second (kbps) in the public switched telephone network (PSTN) circuit or 512 kbps in a broadband Internet connection) and between devices, such as universal serial bus ports, FireWire or modems.
A bit, which is characterized as a binary variable of 0 or 1, is a small electrical switch in random access memory (RAM) or read-only memory (ROM). A value of 0 indicates an off electrical switch, and a value of 1 indicates an on electrical switch. The bit value of 0 or 1 is held in a high- or low-voltage charge within a capacitor or transistor memory cell.
The bit is the most basic unit of data in computing. A group of eight bits is known as a byte. A byte can hold 256 values, ranging from 0 to 255. Generally, a byte is the number of bits used to encode a single text character.
The bits of a byte are numbered 0 to 7. In addition, bits are frequently written from highest to lowest bit, but this is not always the case.
Communication speed is normally measured in thousands of bytes per second. The lower-case b stands for bit, and the capitalized B stands for byte. For example, one kilobit (Kb) is 1000 bits and one kilobyte (KB) is 1000 bytes.