Fine Grained AccessYou can store and access a single byte in memory.
Memory AddressesWord addressing allows more memory with the same length of memory address. This isn't much of an issue for modern byte addressable architectures with 64-bit memory addresses as they can still address up to 16 exbibytes.
BusAnother way that byte addressing is potentially inefficient is that modern architectures have a 32-bit or 64-bit bus that returns more than 8-bits at a time.
Text vs BinaryGenerally speaking, byte addressing is useful for storing text as character encodings such as UTF-8 use 8-bit characters for most text. Byte addressing is less useful for storing large data blobs such as an image.
|Overview: Byte Addressing
Computing hardware that allows individual bytes to be accessed from memory.