C++ Data Types

In C++ programming, a data type is an attribute of data which tells the compiler or interpreter how the programmer wants to use the data. Most programming language use Data types like boolean, integer and real.

In C++ language there are two types of data type:

  • Primitive data type. (Primary data type).
  • Non-primitive data type.(Derived data type).

Primitive data type 

Primitive data type these also known as Primary data types or pre-defined data types.

These data types are int, char, float, void.

Data typeSizeRangeDescription
char1 byte-128 to +127A character
int2 or 4 byte-32,768 to 32,767 or
-2,147,483,648 to +2,147,483,647
An integer
float4 byte1.2E-38 to 3.4E+38Single precision floating-point number
void1 byte-128 to +127void type stores nothing

Character data type(char):

It stores a single character and requires a single byte and can store 128 characters. In C++ programming language char keyword used to define the character type.


Integer data type (int):

As the name suggests, it is an integer data type which can only store integers. In C++ programming int keyword used to define integer type. Integer can any number. It means the integer can be zero, positive and negative value but cannot be a float or decimal value.


The size of the integer type is 2 or 4 bytes and it can store value upto 32,768 to 32,767 or -2,147,483,648 to +2,147,483,647.

Float data type(float & double):

It is used to store decimal numbers (numbers with floating point value) with single precision. In C++ programming language float or double keyword is used to define real numbers type.


The size of float is 4 bytes and the size of double is 8 bytes. the float can store value up to 1.2E-38 to 3.4E+38 whereas double store value up to 2.3E-308 to 1.7E+308.

void type(void): 

As the name suggests, void internally does not store anything. They are used to define a function return type or a generic pointer.

Non Primitive data type 

Non Primitive data type also known as Derived data types: These data types are: arrays, pointers, union, structures, etc.


An array is a collection of data or finite ordered collection of homogeneous data, stored in contiguous memory locations. Arrays are also referred to as structured data types.


In C++ language pointer is a variable the stores/points the address of another variable. The pointer is used to allocate memory dynamically. Another variable can be of type int, char, array function, or any other pointer.


In Array, we can store data of one type only, but the structure is a variable that gives the facility of storing data of different data type in one variable. Structures are variables that have several parts; each part of the object can have different types. Each part of the structure is called a member of the structure.

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