In telecommunications and computing, bit rate (bitrate or as a variable R) is the number of bits that are conveyed or processed per unit of time.
The bit rate is quantified using the bits per second unit (symbol: "bit/s"), often in conjunction with an SI prefix such as "kilo" (1 kbit/s = 1,000 bit/s), "mega" (1 Mbit/s = 1,000 kbit/s), "giga" (1 Gbit/s = 1,000 Mbit/s) or "tera" (1 Tbit/s = 1000 Gbit/s). The non-standard abbreviation "bps" is often used to replace the standard symbol "bit/s", so that, for example, "1 Mbps" is used to mean one million bits per second.
In most environments, one byte per second (1 B/s) corresponds to 8 bit/s.
When quantifying large bit rates, SI prefixes (also known as metric prefixes or decimal prefixes) are used, thus:
Binary prefixes are sometimes used for bit rates. The International Standard (IEC 80000-13) specifies different abbreviations for binary and decimal (SI) prefixes (e.g. 1 KiB/s = 1024 B/s = 8192 bit/s, and 1 MiB/s = 1024 KiB/s).