Difference between Microprocessor and Microcontroller, PDF

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Difference between Microprocessor and Microcontroller:

Before going to read let’s have an overview on Microprocessor and Microcontrollers.


A microprocessor is a controlling unit of a micro-computer, fabricated on a small chip capable of performing ALU (Arithmetic Logical Unit) operations and communicating with the other devices connected to it.

Microprocessor consists of an ALU, register array, and a control unit. ALU performs arithmetical and logical operations on the data received from the memory or an input device.

Register array consists of registers identified by letters like B, C, D, E, H, L, and accumulator.

The control unit controls the flow of data and instructions within the computer.


A microcontroller is a compact integrated circuit designed to govern a specific operation in an embedded system.

Sometimes referred to as an embedded controller or microcontroller unit (MCU), microcontrollers are found in vehicles, robots, office machines, medical devices, mobile radio transceivers, vending machines, and home appliances among other devices.

This is used in multiple industries and applications, including in the home and enterprise, building automation, manufacturing, robotics, automotive, lighting, smart energy, industrial automation, communications and internet of things (IoT) deployments.

The simplest microcontrollers facilitate the operation of electromechanical systems found in everyday convenience items, such as ovens, refrigerators, toasters, mobile devices, key fobs, video games, televisions, and lawn-watering systems. They are also common in office machines such as photocopiers, scanners, fax machines, and printers, as well as smart meters, ATMs and security systems.

More sophisticated microcontrollers perform critical functions in aircraft, spacecraft, ocean-going vessels, vehicles, medical and life-support systems, and robots.

In medical scenarios, microcontrollers can regulate the operations of an artificial heart, kidney or another organ.

They can also be instrumental in the functioning of prosthetic devices. 

Difference between Microprocessor and Microcontroller

SL. NO Microprocessor Microcontroller
1. The microprocessor has many operation codes (opcodes) for moving data from external memory to CPU (Central processing input). The microcontroller has one or two opcodes for moving data from external memory to CPU (Central processing input).
2. The microprocessor has one or two types of bit handling instruction. The microprocessor has many types of bit handling instruction.
3. This is concerned with the rapid movement of code and data from external addresses to the chip. This is concerned with the rapid movement of bits within the chip.
4. It must have many additional parts to function as a computer. This can function as a computer without the addition of external parts.
5. The microprocessor is intended to be general purpose digital computers. The microcontrollers are intended to be special purpose digital computers.
6. This contains a CPU, memory addressing circuit and interrupt handling circuit. This has additional features such as on-chip timers, parallel and series input-output and internal RAM and ROM.
7. This does not have own input memory. This has its own memory.
8. Less multifunctional pins This is more multifunctional fins.
9. More Hardware  Less hardware
10. Program and Data are stored in Ram memory. Program and Data are stored in a separate memory.

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