down·​scale | \ ˈdau̇n-ˌskāl How to pronounce downscale (audio) \
downscaled; downscaling

Definition of downscale

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to cut back in size or scope the recession forced us to downscale vacation plans



Definition of downscale (Entry 2 of 2)

: lower in class, income, or quality

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Examples of downscale in a Sentence

Verb The festival will have to be downscaled this year. the poor economy forced the plant to downscale production Adjective an apartment in a downscale neighborhood The company aims to reach a more downscale market with its new stores.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Standard Chartered Bank, similar to HSBC in having dual corporate headquarters in Europe and Asia, intends to downscale its office space by over 30%. Jack Kelly, Forbes, "HSBC CEO Calls For Ditching Posh Executive Offices For Hot Desks And A Hybrid Work Model," 19 Apr. 2021 Governments may also take the statistics at face value and downscale their COVID surveillance efforts, Kyobutungi warns. Sarah Wild, Scientific American, "Hidden Toll of COVID in Africa Threatens Global Pandemic Progress," 25 Mar. 2021 Standard Chartered Bank, similar to HSBC in having dual corporate headquarters in Europe and Asia, intends to downscale its office space by over 30%. Jack Kelly, Forbes, "European Banks Are Cutting Their Office Space In Favor Of Remote Work—While In The U.S., Goldman Sachs And JPMorgan Want People To Return To The Office," 1 Mar. 2021 While games would usually start at crisp HD resolutions, the image would sometime downscale very noticeably in the middle of play, resulting in grainy textures and washed out colors. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Project Xcloud preview serves as a passable, portable Xbox One," 18 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Or an entire town shut down by a plant closing, being stripped of its ZIP Code, forcing depressed, penniless residents to flee to hideously downscale trailer parks? Joe Queenan, WSJ, "When Did Hollywood Get So Gloomy?," 2 Apr. 2021 After that, the space went downscale, turning into a T.G.I. Friday’s and Arby’s, before lying vacant. Gary Stern, Forbes, "Three Entrepreneurs Are Reviving Gage & Tollner, Once Brooklyn’s Finest," 3 Mar. 2021 Over the game's six chapters, nearly all of its puzzles utilize this upscale/downscale mechanic. Peter Rubin, Wired, "Maquette Goes Big on Metaphor but Light on Real Emotion," 2 Mar. 2021 Our team of scientists, however, has developed a geographic and statistical model to downscale national opinion results to the state, congressional district, and county levels. Paul Douglas, Star Tribune, "30 Degree Drop: Shorts Today Give Way to Sweatshirts & Jackets Next Week," 24 Sep. 2020 Across the country, brides-to-be have had to cancel, postpone or downscale wedding celebrations out of coronavirus safety precautions and stay-at-home orders. NBC News, "After coronavirus changed their wedding plans, these brides-to-be found new audiences to help them celebrate," 17 May 2020 As the city hunkered down in the coronavirus pandemic, people stripped bare shelves in trendier grocers including Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, while downscale supermarkets such as Key Foods and Gristedes remained well supplied. Polly Mosendz,, "Fleeing to Hamptons, Buying Beans: NYC Virus Fears Trace Wealth Gap," 5 May 2020 Garland grasped a month-long stint at London’s Talk of the Town nightclub (an early, downscale version of today’s lucrative Las Vegas residencies) as a lifeline. Armond White, National Review, "Renée Zellweger’s Bio-Pic Judy Is Compassionate and Honest," 27 Sep. 2019 It’s hard to consider a restaurant an upstart nine years into its tenure, but crossover success remains elusive for Hue Gourmet, which routinely is passed over by those who find the food too unfamiliar or the surroundings too downscale. Dominic Armato, azcentral, "Go to Hue Gourmet for Vietnamese cuisine you can't find anywhere else in metro Phoenix," 10 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'downscale.' 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 downscale


1945, in the meaning defined above


1930, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for downscale

Time Traveler

The first known use of downscale was in 1930

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Statistics for downscale

Last Updated

4 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Downscale.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for downscale



English Language Learners Definition of downscale

 (Entry 1 of 2)

US : to make (something) smaller



English Language Learners Definition of downscale (Entry 2 of 2)

US : relating or appealing to people who do not have much money also : of low quality

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