Short for “Bitmap.” It can be pronounced as “bump,” “B-M-P,” or simply a “bitmap image.” The BMP format is a commonly used raster graphic format for saving image files. It was introduced on the Windows platform, but is now recognized by many programs on both Macs and PCs.
The BMP format stores color data for each pixel in the image without any compression. For example, a 10×10 pixel BMP image will include color data for 100 pixels. This method of storing image information allows for crisp, high-quality graphics, but also produces large file sizes. The JPEG and GIF formats are also bitmaps, but use image compression algorithms that can significantly decrease their file size. For this reason, JPEG and GIF images are used on the Web, while BMP images are often used for printable images.