What Is a Billion? Definition, Examples, Facts, Conversion

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What Is a Billion?

A billion is 1,000,000,000. It is a ten-digit number formed by 1 followed by 9 zeros.

In terms of millions, one billion is one thousand million. 

One billion = 1,000,000,000 = 109

One billion is the smallest ten-digit number in math.

Abbreviation for billion: “B” is the most common way to abbreviate billion. 


Short scale and long scale are two naming systems used for naming large numbers (integer powers of ten). In these systems, the same terms represent different values and have different meanings.

1 billion has two notations based on the short scale and long scale naming system.

  • In the long scale system, the large numbers are expressed in the powers of one million (1,000,000).
    1 billion = 1,000,000,000,000 = 1012 = One million million (by long scale)
  • In the short scale system, the large numbers are expressed in the powers of one thousand (1,000). The USA follows the short scale system.
    1 billion = 1,000,000,000 = 109 = One thousand million (by short scale)

Definition of Billion

A billion is defined as the numerical value equivalent to 1,000,000,000 or 109

Billions Period in the International Place Value Chart

In the international place value chart, twelve places are divided into four periods, starting from the right-hand side. These four periods are Ones, Thousands, Millions, and Billions.

Each period consists of three positions or place values. Take a look at the international place value chart.

International place value chart

Let’s put 1 billion = 1,000,000,000 in the international place value chart to understand the place values.

One billion place value chart

How Many Millions Are in a Billion?

There are thousand millions in a billion. In other words, one thousand million make one billion.

1 billion = One thousand million

Using the place value chart, we can easily understand this. 

  • One million is 1 followed by six zeros.

1 million = 1,000,000

  • Now, take a look at 1 billion.

1 billion = 1,000,000,000

There are six zeros after 1000.

So, 1 billion is equal to one thousand million.

Trick to Remember Number of Zeros in One Billion

A billion has nine zeros. You can categorize it into groups of three zeros or into groups of three 103. You will get three groups each containing three zeros. Thus, there will be nine zeros in 1 billion.

1,000,000,000 = 1 $\times$ 10 $\times$ 10 $\times$ 103  = 1 $\times$ 109

Facts about Billion

  • 1 billion = 1,000,000,000
  • 1 billion is a predecessor of 1,000,000,001.
  • 1 billion is a successor of 999,999,999.
  • As per the Indian place value chart, 1 billion = 100 crores = 10,000 lakhs.
  • In the short-scale numbering system, which is commonly used in the countries, such as the United States, Canada, and France, a billion is defined as
    1B = 1,000,000,000 = 1,000 million.
  • While in the long-scale numbering system, which is used in some European countries, such as the United Kingdom, Australia, and many other European countries, a billion is defined as 1,000,000,000,000 = 1012 = One million million, which is known as the long-scale.
  • It is important to be aware of which definition of a billion is being used to avoid misunderstandings, especially in international contexts.
  • To avoid ambiguity, it’s always important to clarify which numbering system you are referring to when discussing large numbers like billions. The short-scale system is more widely used and understood in contemporary contexts.

Solved Examples on Billion

  1. If Jacob saves $\$50,000$ per year, how many years would it take him to become a billionaire?


To become a billionaire, Jacob needs to save one billion dollars. To calculate the number of years it would take for them to earn that much, we can divide 1 billion (1,000,000,000) by their yearly savings of $\$50,000$.

$\frac{1,000,000,000}{50,000} = 20,000$ 

So, it would take Jacob 20,000 years to become a billionaire if he saves $\$50,000$ per year.

  1. A company had a revenue of 2.5 billion dollars last year. This year, their revenue increased by 20%. What is their new revenue?


Last year’s revenue = 2.5 billion dollars = $2,500,000,000

Revenue has increased by 20%.

Increase in the revenue $= \$2,500,000,000 \times $20% = $500,000,000 = 500 million dollars

New revenue = 2.5 billion dollars + 500 million dollars

New revenue $= \$2,500,000,000 + \$500,000,000$

New revenue $= \$3,000,000,000$

Therefore, the company’s new revenue is $\$3$ billion.

  1. Find the difference between the smallest ten-digit number and the greatest nine-digit number .


Greatest nine-digit number = 999,999,999

Smallest ten-digit number = 1,000,000,000 = 1 billion

Difference = 1,000,000,000-999,999,999=1

Practice Problems on Billion

What Is a Billion? Definition, Examples, Facts, Conversion

Attend this quiz & Test your knowledge.


What is a billion?

1 million
10 million
100 million
1000 million
Correct answer is: 1000 million
1 billion is equal to 1000 million.

How many zeros are in one billion?

Correct answer is: 9
There are nine zeros in a billion, represented as 1,000,000,000.

One billion in terms of million is

Hundred million
Ten million
Thousand million
Ten thousand Million
Correct answer is: Thousand million
One billion is a thousand million.

Which of the following is the correct form to represent a billion?

Correct answer is: $10^{9}$
The correct form to represent a billion is $10^{9}$.

Frequently Asked Questions on Billion

A billion is a number that represents one thousand million, or 1,000,000,000. It is commonly used to denote large amounts of money or populations.

The short scale and the long scale are two different ways of naming large numbers. The short-scale billion is equal to 1,000,000,000 (1 billion = 1,000 million), while the long-scale billion is equal to 1,000,000,000,000 (1 billion = 1 million million).

A gigabyte is a unit of digital information storage that is equal to 1,000,000,000 bytes or 1 billion bytes.

As per the most commonly accepted short-scale naming system, a billion has nine zeros.

There are 100 crores in one billion.

One trillion equals a thousand billions.

One trillion = 1,000,000,000,000

No, 1000 million make a billion.