al·​pha·​nu·​mer·​ic | \ ˌal-fə-nu̇-ˈmer-ik How to pronounce alphanumeric (audio) , -nyu̇- \
variants: or less commonly alphanumerical \ ˌal-​fə-​n(y)u̇-​ˈmer-​i-​kəl How to pronounce alphanumerical (audio) \

Definition of alphanumeric

1 : consisting of both letters and numbers and often other symbols (such as punctuation marks and mathematical symbols) an alphanumeric code also : being a character in an alphanumeric system
2 : capable of using or displaying alphanumeric characters

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Other Words from alphanumeric

alphanumerically \ ˌal-​fə-​n(y)u̇-​ˈmer-​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce alphanumerically (audio) \ adverb
alphanumerics \ ˌal-​fə-​n(y)u̇-​ˈmer-​iks How to pronounce alphanumerics (audio) \ plural noun

Did You Know?

Alphanumeric passwords are much harder for a hacker to crack than plain alphabetic passwords, since the number of possible combinations is so much greater. License plates usually contain both letters and numbers, since, for a big state or country, the plate wouldn't be large enough to fit enough numbers for everyone. In computing, the standard alphanumeric codes, such as ASCII, may contain not only ordinary letters and numerals but also punctuation marks and math symbols.

Examples of alphanumeric in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And the brand’s latest, four-digit CX-30 SUV is an alphanumeric migraine that doesn’t fit in the brand’s simple, single-digit sedan lineup (Mazda 3,6) or the three-digit SUV silo (CX-3, CX-5, CX-9). Dallas News, "Mazda CX-30 outshines its competitors — even the more expensive ones," 18 Jan. 2020 Formerly anonymous public servants became the topic of vicious debate among strangers with alphanumeric Twitter handles and pictures of dogs as online avatars. Damian Garde, STAT, "3 trends in biotech to watch in 2020," 26 Dec. 2019 Carr flipped through the letter, skimming the alphanumeric sequence. Yudhijit Bhattacharjee, CNN, "How the FBI tracked down 'the spy who couldn't spell'," 1 Nov. 2019 They were each given two minutes to shower, and addressed by staff with an alphanumeric code, rather than their names. Griff Witte, Washington Post, "They’re the refugees that Trump tried to stop. But now they’re here, and they’re ‘becoming Americans.’," 12 Oct. 2019 Password: lovedogs Error: Password must contain at least nine alphanumeric characters, including one number. Claire Friedman, The New Yorker, "This Password Is Invalid," 15 July 2019 These services make the process of dealing with cryptocurrencies less about long alphanumeric addresses and QR codes to something more like Venmo or a banking app. Alexander George, Popular Mechanics, "Crypto Exchange Founder's Untimely Death Leaves $190 Million Locked Away in Limbo," 4 Feb. 2019 Digital currency addresses are alphanumeric identifiers, which are linked to online wallets. Samuel Rubenfeld, WSJ, "U.S. Treasury Adds Digital Currency to Means of Identifying Sanctions Targets," 28 Nov. 2018 For example, the ASCII encoding scheme uses a seven-bit string to represent alphanumeric characters. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Inventor says Google is patenting work he put in the public domain," 10 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alphanumeric.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of alphanumeric

1950, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for alphanumeric

alphabetic + numeric, numerical

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Time Traveler for alphanumeric

Time Traveler

The first known use of alphanumeric was in 1950

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Statistics for alphanumeric

Last Updated

24 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Alphanumeric.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for alphanumeric


How to pronounce alphanumeric (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of alphanumeric

: having or using letters and numbers

More from Merriam-Webster on alphanumeric

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with alphanumeric

Nglish: Translation of alphanumeric for Spanish Speakers

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