in·​no·​vate ˈi-nə-ˌvāt How to pronounce innovate (audio)
innovated; innovating

intransitive verb

: to make changes : do something in a new way

transitive verb

: to introduce as or as if new
archaic : to effect a change in
The dictates of my father were … not to be altered, innovated, or even discussed …Sir Walter Scott
innovator noun
ˈi-nə-və-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce innovate (audio)

Examples of innovate in a Sentence

The company plans to continue innovating and experimenting. The company innovated a new operating system.
Recent Examples on the Web Company officials emphasized during the event that GM must continue to innovate to keep an edge on its rivals in the automotive industry. George Avalos, The Mercury News, 15 May 2024 Strengthening municipal governments and their capacity to innovate, partner, and deliver should be a national, congressional priority. James Anderson, TIME, 15 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for innovate 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'innovate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin innovatus, past participle of innovare, from in- + novus new — more at new

First Known Use

1548, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of innovate was in 1548

Dictionary Entries Near innovate

Cite this Entry

“Innovate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


in·​no·​vate ˈin-ə-ˌvāt How to pronounce innovate (audio)
innovated; innovating
: to introduce something new
innovate a new website
: do something in a new way
innovator noun

More from Merriam-Webster on innovate

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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