innovation

noun
in·​no·​va·​tion | \ ˌi-nə-ˈvā-shən How to pronounce innovation (audio) \

Definition of innovation

1 : the introduction of something new
2 : a new idea, method, or device : novelty

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Other Words from innovation

innovational \ ˌi-​nə-​ˈvā-​shnəl How to pronounce innovational (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

What is the difference between innovation and invention?

The words innovation and invention overlap semantically but are really quite distinct.

Invention can refer to a type of musical composition, a falsehood, a discovery, or any product of the imagination. The sense of invention most likely to be confused with innovation is “a device, contrivance, or process originated after study and experiment,” usually something which has not previously been in existence.

Innovation, for its part, can refer to something new or to a change made to an existing product, idea, or field. One might say that the first telephone was an invention, the first cellular telephone either an invention or an innovation, and the first smartphone an innovation.

Examples of innovation in a Sentence

She is responsible for many innovations in her field. the latest innovation in computer technology Through technology and innovation, they found ways to get better results with less work. the rapid pace of technological innovation
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Recent Examples on the Web

Kellogg, which touted its latest innovations at a consumer conference Wednesday, needs to try harder. Aaron Back, WSJ, "Kellogg’s New Pringles Fail to Make Waves," 20 Feb. 2019 Our innovation and operations team thinks through the best way for Visa in that environment to provide a flawless and frictionless experience. Barry Wilner, The Seattle Times, "Cashless Super Bowl coming? Visa says yes," 29 Jan. 2019 Searching doesn't limit itself to computer screens, either, and its visual innovations are matched by a suspenseful story with some unexpected twists. Sam Machkovech And Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "Films for the discerning nerd: Ars picks the best of 2018," 27 Dec. 2018 But over the past few years of start-ups and app development, innovations in beauty tech seem to cut out the conversation that makes the industry so much fun in the first place. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Meet Color&Co, the L'Oréal Start-Up That Lets You Video Chat with a Hair Colorist," 9 May 2019 Decades of innovation have gone into every wind turbine and solar panel in this country, and these energy sources have been getting exponentially cheaper. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Renewables Outproduced Coal Power in the U.S. for the First Time Ever," 2 May 2019 Breast pumps for nursing mothers are another area experiencing a surge of innovation — with quite a price tag. Ciara Phelan, Allure, "What Is Femtech, and Is It the New Pink Tax?," 22 Apr. 2019 Large beauty industry companies such as Estée Lauder have always invested heavily in innovation. Sara Castellanos, WSJ, "Estée Lauder Revamps IT, Merging Beauty Business With Innovation," 20 Mar. 2019 How could the empress dowager have ushered in groundbreaking innovation when much of her career was devoted to her drive to preserve the imperial family that crumbled three years after her death? New York Times, "Was This Powerful Chinese Empress a Feminist Trailblazer?," 10 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for innovation

Last Updated

9 Jun 2019

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

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More Definitions for innovation

innovation

noun

English Language Learners Definition of innovation

: a new idea, device, or method
: the act or process of introducing new ideas, devices, or methods

innovation

noun
in·​no·​va·​tion | \ ˌi-nə-ˈvā-shən How to pronounce innovation (audio) \

Kids Definition of innovation

1 : a new idea, method, or device : novelty The company's latest innovation is a talking car.
2 : the introduction of something new Consumers are looking for innovation.

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Comments on innovation

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