10 Important Difference Between TCP And UDP (Tabular Form)

difference between tcp and udp
What is the difference between TCP and UDP?

In our day-to-day life, we come across two different types of Internet Protocol to send and receive data across the internet. They are known as TCP(Transfer Control Protocol) and UDP(User Datagram Protocol). 

An IP address is assigned to each device that connects to the internet. And when two devices connect over the internet, they’re almost certainly utilizing TCP or UDP.

Basically, TCP is connection-oriented while UDP is connectionless. That means TCP makes sure that the end-to-end connection is established before sending any kind of data but UDP does not make any connection beforehand. As a result, TCP is slower in comparison to UDP.

There are four-layer in the TCP/IP model where TCP and UDP reside on the transport layer.

TCP is a fairly dependable protocol that is used for everything from browsing the web (HTTP) to sending emails (SMTP) to transferring files (FTP).

UDP is used in instances where a small amount of data loss is acceptable, such as live video/audio, or where speed is crucial, such as online gaming.

What Is TCP?

TCP stands for Transmission Control Protocol. It is a connection-oriented protocol, which means that once a connection is established, data can be sent in both directions.

TCP employs a three-way handshake to establish a connection between two devices: flow, error, and congestion control.

It was created as a model to provide a highly stable and end-to-end byte stream over an unreliable internet connection.

They aid in the detection of faults and ensure that data is delivered in the same sequence as it was sent. As a result, it’s ideal for browsing the web, sending emails, and sharing files.

What Is UDP?

UDP (User Datagram Protocol) is a simplified, connectionless Internet protocol that does not require error-checking or recovery services.

The UDP protocol is nearly identical to TCP, but it eliminates all error-checking, back-and-forth communication, and deliverability.

It also doesn’t ensure data packet delivery, which is why it’s called the “fire and forget” protocol.

When using UDP to open, maintain, or terminate a connection, there is no delay. As a result, it’s great for audio and video calling, as well as gaming.

Also Read: Difference Between OSI and TCP/IP model

Difference Between TCP And UDP: TCP VS UDP

Transfer Control ProtocolStands ForUser Datagram Protocol
It is used when information is sent across the internetBasicIt is used when information is sent across the internet
Connection-oriented methodConnectionConnection-less method
Comparatively slower than UDPSpeedComparatively faster than TCP
Retransmission of data is possibleRetransmissionRetransmission of data is not possible
The size of the header is 20 bytes.Size of headerThe size of the header is 8 bytes
Makes acknowledgmentAcknowledgmentDo not make acknowledgment
The transmitted data always reaches the destinationReliabilityThe complete transmission of data is not guaranteed
SYN, SYN-ACK, ACKHandshakeNo-Handshake
It uses flow control method that is sliding window protocolData Flow controlIt does not use the flow control method
More efficientEfficiencyLess efficient
Data packets are rearranged in a specific orderData sequencingData packets are not rearranged in a specific order
Do not support broadcastingBroadcastingSupports broadcasting
Web surfing, sending email and transferring filesApplicationAudio calling, video calling, and online gaming


UDP, a connectionless protocol is commonly used for transferring audio and video data since it is faster, simpler, and more efficient. TCP, a connection-oriented protocol, on the other hand, is strong, dependable, and ensures that packets are delivered in sequential order.

Also, it depends totally on your need, whether to use TCP or UDP protocol as discussed above.

I hope this post clarified some of the difference between TCP and UDP.

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