fid·​dly | \ ˈfi-dᵊl-ē How to pronounce fiddly (audio) \

Definition of fiddly

chiefly British
: requiring close attention to detail : fussy especially : requiring an annoying amount of close attention the tiny control buttons on the back are fiddly— M. J. McNamara

Examples of fiddly in a Sentence

connecting up all the wires and the other fiddly bits
Recent Examples on the Web Getting rid of those removable Joy-Cons—and the fiddly snap-on connection tying them to the main system housing—just makes the Switch Lite feel more solid in the hands. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Nintendo Switch Lite is the best portable system Nintendo has ever made," 19 Sep. 2019 Apple has rightly resisted the temptation of building in fiddly touch controls. Bloomberg News, The Denver Post, "Apple redesigns world’s best-selling headphones with new Beats," 20 Oct. 2019 Two of the steps require the clumsy manipulation of those fiddly wing nuts and hinges. Thomas Ricker, The Verge, "Brompton Electric bike review: remarkably practical," 2 July 2019 Just like the piano keys, these small accessories are composed of lots of fiddly bits that are easily squashed or separated. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "How well does Nintendo Labo cardboard hold up after a few weeks?," 3 May 2018 Analysts gripe that Renault’s alliance is too fiddly to value. The Economist, "Corporate citizens of somewhere," 22 Mar. 2018 The game comes with lots of fiddly stats to keep track of, requiring players to shove plastic cubes around its board constantly as part of some not-very-interesting bookkeeping. Owen Duffy, Ars Technica, "First Martians board game makes a powerful case for staying on Earth," 20 Jan. 2018 Preparing and maintaining qubits is a delicate and fiddly process, akin to classical computing in the days before silicon. The Economist, "Computer scienceMaking quantum computers reliable," 22 Feb. 2018 The carmaker has learned to be more nimble; Cruise has picked up how to make its fiddly technology robust enough for the open road. The Economist, "General Uber-MotorsGM takes an unexpected lead in the race to develop autonomous vehicles," 25 Jan. 2018

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

1926, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of fiddly was in 1926

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Cite this Entry

“Fiddly.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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How to pronounce fiddly (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of fiddly

chiefly British, informal : awkward or difficult to handle because of many small parts or details

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