Bits vs Bytes - How Much Data is 500MB?
2 minute read
TunnelBear's trial version gives you 500 megabytes of data to try out the network and make sure TunnelBear is right for your needs. The question is, what does 500MB of browsing data really mean? 500MB sounds like a lot, but without knowing how much data your favourite services use, you can hit your cap quickly. In this article, we'll talk about how much data your favourite online services use, and what 500MB means with practical examples.
What's the difference between a bit and a byte?
The difference between a bit and a byte is how much information they can store. Bits are the smallest unit of digital data. One bit can contain a 1 or a 0 of binary data, a "yes" or a "no." When you combine eight bits, you get one byte. One byte is enough data to add a single number or letter to a text file.
Like most units of measurement, large numbers are easier to understand by using names like kilo for 1000, mega for 1 000 000, giga for 1 000 000 000, etc. Prefixes are used to help make it easier to understand the amount of data we have in everything from internet service plans to hard drive space.
How much data is in a Megabyte?
The amount of data in a megabyte is roughly the same as a low resolution photo, or one minute of "high quality" music streaming. With 500MB, you could listen to just under 7 hours of "high quality" music.
If you're streaming video, get ready for much larger files. One minute of streaming "HDTV" can be anywhere between 10MB to 2.5GB, depending on what service you're using. If you're planning on using the trial version of TunnelBear to watch high-res TV, you won't have much time before you run out of data.
How do I know how much data I need?
To find out how much data you need for the online services you use, here are some rough estimates of the bandwidth used per hour*:
1 hour of music streaming
Low quality - 10MB
High quality - 72MB
Very high quality - 144MB
1 hour of video streaming
SDTV - 700MB
HDTV - 2.5GB
4KTV - 5.5GB
1 hour of social media
Light use - 500MB
Heavy use - 3GB
1 hour of web browsing
Between 10MB - 25MB
TunnelBear 500MB free trial
TunnelBear's 500MB free trial lets you test our network to make sure TunnelBear is right for your needs. 500MB should give you enough time to browse, check your favourite social accounts and watch a few videos. If you want to get the most out of your Bear, you'll want to upgrade to a monthly or yearly plan to take advantage of unlimited data.
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*These are estimates only. Different services have different quality settings that will affect the amount of data used. All information was taken from major ISP broadband usage calculators and averaged out.