Difference Between Quantity and Unit (With Table)

When we need to make someone understand the number of items, we use different measurements. But sometimes, we do not refer to an exact amount and use an estimated amount, so two words, quantity and units, are used to make an idea of the number of items. Though they are used alternatively, there is a difference between them. So here are some thread diameter differences to make the idea more clear about quantity and unit.

Quantity vs Unit

The difference between quantity and unit is that the quantity is used to refer to the item which is uncountable, and the unit is used to refer to an item that is in small amount or can be counted. This difference is very mild and not noticed. The quantity is used for uncountable nouns, and the unit Is used to refer to whole and countable nouns.

The term Quantity has been used since the 14th century. The term quantity has been used since the 14th century. The term quantity is originated from the European word “quantus,” which means “how much.” This word is used to make an idea of the uncountable items. This is used in any field with different meanings. This word is used to make an idea of the uncountable items. This is used in any field with different meanings.

The term Unit was used since the mid-16th century. The word unit is derived from the Greek word “monas,” which means solitary or single. So as it means this, this word was later used as a measurement standard. This unit also means a single or small amount. Unit is sometimes used to discard the actual item name.

Comparison Table Between Quantity and Unit

Parameters of ComparisonQuantityUnit
AmountUsed to refer large amountUsed to refer small amount
CountableUsed when the items are uncountableUsed when the items are countable
NatureUsed for indefinite numberUsed for a definite number of items
IndicationUsed to indicate estimated numberUsed to indicate the exact number
For exampleI need a huge quantity of sponsorship for the programThere are 26 units in my apartment

What is Quantity?

The term quantity has been used since the 14th century. The term quantity is originated from the European word “quantus,” which means “how much.” This word is used to make an idea of the uncountable items. This is used in any field with different meanings.

Sometimes quantity is also used to mean a large amount of item. For example, this construction work will require a quantity of cement, which will be mentioned further. Here the huge amount is not mentioned. So they mention the word “quantity,” which itself shows the amount required will be large. 

The term quantity is used to refer to an amount of item. But this has a specialty which is that the amount is mostly uncountable. An uncountable thing is expressed as that cannot be exact. For example, use sugar as the quantity required. Here the word quantity is used to mention as one can use as much a required nothing is specified.

The term quantity is used to refer to an indefinite amount. Similarly, another way to use the word Quantity is that I need a huge quantity of sponsorship for the program. Here also the amount of money is indefinite. It depends on how many people are accepting the sponsorship invitation. So to show an indefinite thing, quantity is used.

What is Unit?

The term unit was used since the mid-16th century. The word unit is derived from the Greek word “monas,” which means solitary or single. So as it means this, this word was later used as a measurement standard. This unit also means a single or small amount. Unit is sometimes used to discard the actual item name.

The term unit refers to a small amount or a single amount. Anything can be considered and counted as units. For example, in this meeting we need chairs, and there will be 200 units. This unit is referred to as chairs. In place of chairs, the word units are used.

Unit is used when an exact number of items are ordered or specified. If one does not know the exact number required, the word unit cannot be used. The unit is sometimes used to omit the actual measurement, like 20 unit square. This unit may be meters, kilometers, etc., as it depends on calculation, the unit is used.

Main Differences Between Quantity and Unit

  1. Quantity is used to relate an amount that is huge, but in contrast, the unit is used to refer to a single or small amount of items.
  2. Quantity is used to refer to items that are uncountable. On the other hand, the unit is referred to as items that can be counted.
  3. Quantity is used to refer to those items which are the indefinite number. In comparison, a unit is referred to as a definite number of items.
  4. Quantity is used to indicate the estimated number, and on the other hand, the unit is referred to indicate the exact number of items.
  5. An example of Quantity is I need a huge quantity of food to feed people, and on the other hand, unit is there are 26 units in my apartment.

Conclusion 

The difference between quantity and unit is described in the article. These two words are used in alternate ways. But they have some differences between them which are better to know while using these. Units and quantities are used in various places with various meanings. The place of application defines its meaning.

Unit is also used in physics and mathematics as standard f measurement. This was used as the standard of measurement since the 18th century. In English, it has a different meaning. It is similar to that of quantity.

References 

  1. https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED334084.pdf#page=70
  2. https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/260166
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