\ ˈbīt How to pronounce byte (audio) \

Definition of byte

: a unit of computer information or data-storage capacity that consists of a group of eight bits and that is used especially to represent an alphanumeric character — compare word entry 1 sense 10

Examples of byte in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Sometimes, those discrepancies come down to a single byte. Washington Post, "How some savvy fans are preserving the PS3’s multiplayer games," 27 Nov. 2020 In one case, though, remote attacks were possible against default systems when an attacker kept a connection to the vulnerable server open for seven days by transmitting one byte every few minutes. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Russian hackers are exploiting bug that gives control of US servers," 28 May 2020 The company's name refers to 0s and 1s dancing together to form a byte, the binary code used by computers. Sherisse Pham, CNN, "TikTok needs to win over Washington. Hiring a CEO from Disney won't be enough," 21 May 2020 This is a legacy of Windows XP, which would cough up a hairball when presented with a disk with any hardware blocksize other than 512 byte. Jim Salter, Ars Technica, "Not actually Linux distro review deux: GhostBSD," 13 Apr. 2020 Translating protein structure into sound bytes is far from arbitrary, notes Buehler, who plays the piano, guitar and drums in addition to composing music. Ron Cowen, Scientific American, "Amino Acid Rock Music Helps Build New Proteins," 18 Mar. 2020 But thanks to modern and technology-based financial advisers that traffic in bits and bytes, investing may be easier. Khe Hy, Quartz, "A robo-adviser can simplify investing for novices and know-it-alls," 14 Mar. 2020 The RobbinHood exploit changed a single byte to disable the Windows requirement that drivers be signed. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Windows trust in abandoned code lets ransomware burrow deep into targeted machines," 7 Feb. 2020 The most significant cost—in terms of both money and computing resources—would come from adding a few more bytes of data to all of those introductory device-tower interactions. Lily Hay Newman, Wired, "One Small Fix Would Curb Stingray Surveillance," 27 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'byte.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of byte

1956, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for byte

perhaps alteration of bite entry 2

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Statistics for byte

Last Updated

11 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Byte.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for byte


How to pronounce byte (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of byte

: a unit of computer information that is equal to eight bits


\ ˈbīt How to pronounce byte (audio) \

Kids Definition of byte

: a group of eight bits that a computer handles as a unit

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More from Merriam-Webster on byte

Nglish: Translation of byte for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of byte for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about byte

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