hard·​ware | \ ˈhärd-ˌwer How to pronounce hardware (audio) \

Definition of hardware

1 : ware (such as fittings, cutlery, tools, utensils, or parts of machines) made of metal
2 : major items of equipment or their components used for a particular purpose educational hardware : such as
a : military equipment
b : the physical components (such as electronic and electrical devices) of a vehicle (such as a spacecraft) or an apparatus (such as a computer)
3 : an award (such as a trophy, medal, or cup) given in a sports competition

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of hardware in a Sentence

She bought some new hardware for her system. gathered together the hardware needed to set up a first aid station at the finish line for the marathon
Recent Examples on the Web The hardware platform can be adjusted to comply with individual automaker’s' needs and specs, and the software elements will be upgradable. Roberto Baldwin, Car and Driver, "iPhone Builder Foxconn Is Making an EV Platform with a Solid-State Battery," 16 Oct. 2020 In addition to energy-intensive hardware demands, data centers depend on substantial ventilation and air cooling. Cecilia D'anastasio, Wired, "Next-Gen Gaming Is an Environmental Nightmare," 15 Oct. 2020 The accords include provisions for peaceful exploration, safety, transparency, sustainable use of space resources, cooperation to build and operate spacecraft and other hardware, and the management and disposal of orbital debris. NBC News, "Eight nations sign NASA-led Artemis Accords to guide moon exploration," 14 Oct. 2020 This will allow additional time for SpaceX to complete data reviews and hardware testing observed of the Falcon 9 first stage engine gas generators. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "NASA astronaut, Russian cosmonauts prepare for launch to space station," 14 Oct. 2020 Credit where credit is due: Apple came up with a clever software solution to a unique hardware problem that comes along with 5G. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "Should You Buy the New iPhone 12?," 13 Oct. 2020 Wall mounting hardware is included that allows flexibility to hang either portrait or landscape. Popular Science, "Write on any wall with these dry erase boards.," 13 Oct. 2020 The hardware company also tracks the environmental impacts of select products over their life cycles. Wsj Noted., WSJ, "These Are the World’s 10 Most Sustainably Managed Companies," 13 Oct. 2020 Business has been down about 30% this season at FrightProps, a Brooklyn Park horror hardware store that sells ghastly accessories for haunted houses, escape rooms and Halloween enthusiasts. Richard Chin, Star Tribune, "Twin Cities Halloween attractions switch to drive-through, drive-in or virtual haunts to be safe and scary," 13 Oct. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of hardware

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hardware

Time Traveler for hardware

Time Traveler

The first known use of hardware was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for hardware

Last Updated

20 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hardware.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hardware. Accessed 30 Oct. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hardware


How to pronounce hardware (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hardware

: things (such as tools or parts of machines) that are made of metal
: equipment used for a particular purpose especially : computer equipment


hard·​ware | \ ˈhärd-ˌwer How to pronounce hardware (audio) \

Kids Definition of hardware

1 : things (as tools, cutlery, or parts of machines) made of metal
2 : equipment or parts used for a particular purpose The computer system needs hardware such as monitors and keyboards.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on hardware

What made you want to look up hardware? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Here Be Dragons: A Creature Identification Quiz

  • monster werewolf photo
  • Which is a synonym of werewolf?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!