The method or process of adjusting, encoding bits structure of a file to use less space on the disk is called file compression. The technique is efficient at freeing up memory gaps and space when storing data on the drive.
This makes it easy to locate the files on your drive during write/read operation. It is also referred to as bit-rate reduction or source encoding.
There are two file compression types; lossless and lossy
- In the lossless compression method, decompression returns the files to their initial size. It usually is used for spreadsheets, emails, databases, source codes, and office documents.
- For the loss compression method, decompression does not bring the files back to its initial size. It is used for medical images, videos, photos, music, fax machines, and scanned documents.
Is there a Difference between File Compression and Data Compression?
When comparing file compression to data compression, know that they are not synonymous phrases. Technically, file compression is regarded as a subset of data compression. Data compression, on the other hand, is a reduction in the size of any project.
File compression is a type of data compression method which reduces the size of a file to create more space in the disk space. Additionally, it reduces the size of files when storing important information, which leads to quick transmission over networks or online. All in all, both file and data compression aim to increase the efficiency of disk space.
The Advantages of File Compression
Bandwidth and Transfer Speed
The download process utilizes internet bandwidth when a person downloads a file like an MP4 file from the internet. Bandwidth is the speed at which an internet data is transferred and measured, (usually in megabits per second).
Compressed files are lighter, meaning they have few bits, and such, they require fewer data to download them. So, the transfer speed, or rather the speed of downloading files tend to be faster than uncompressed files.
With a bandwidth of 1mbps, it will only take seconds to download a 10MB file, while a 5MB file will only take five seconds to download.
When you compress your files, the cost of storing your information reduces drastically because you can backup more files in your disk space when you compress them. If you have uncompressed files, you have to purchase an extra 250MB if you have 500MB available space.
You will have to get a new hard drive if you compress data to 50% of their size. The cost of maintaining an internet connection is where all matters. Many transactions with Internet Service Providers include fees for the size of data that you download.
When you download compressed files, you are using fewer internet data than if you were downloading unzipped files. As a result, your internet download expenses will be less.
Improved User Experience
Some firms provide services that focus on offering downloadable data. With uncompressed data, customers suffer a lot in the hands of slow internet speed, which compromises the quality of their experience on the platform.
By compressing your files, you can download your files faster to deter your customers from leaving your website. A given firm that supplied historical data found it challenging to deliver large data files to customers and wanted to see how they can improve their download speed.
After compressing their files, download speeds were high and instantaneous. As a result, customers enjoyed a smooth experience on their sites.
Increased Employee Efficiency
Larger files take a lot of time to download, more so if they have videos and images in them. Also, it could be challenging to access large data, which could result in lengthy delays that not only reduce efficiency but also slow down workflows.
On the other hand, compressed files have faster speeds. Your staff can smoothly retrieve files from storage spaces and get back to work, thus enhancing workflow speed.