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

Definition of innovate

transitive verb

1 : to introduce as or as if new
2 archaic : to effect a change in the dictates of my father were … not to be altered, innovated, or even discussed— Sir Walter Scott

intransitive verb

: to make changes : do something in a new way

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Other Words from innovate

innovator \ ˈi-​nə-​ˌvā-​tər How to pronounce innovator (audio) \ noun
innovatory \ ˈi-​nə-​və-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce innovatory (audio) , ˈi-​nə-​ˌvā-​tə-​rē \ adjective

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

INTech’s mission is to inform and inspire girls to innovate in the technology industry. Dominique Fluker, Essence, "How This Former Engineer Left Her Dream Job To Bring Girls Of Color To Tech," 15 Aug. 2019 Insurers’ apathy is energising reinsurers to innovate in their stead. The Economist, "The future of insurance is happening without insurance firms," 20 July 2019 But the competition also means that everyone is trying to spend less on cardboard, and so innovating in packaging and logistics. Andrew Mcafee, WIRED, "How the iPhone Helped Save the Planet," 29 June 2019 Colorado must continue to innovate in the marijuana industry in the face of growing national competition, Polis said. Carina Julig, The Denver Post, "Colorado surpasses $1 billion in marijuana tax revenue," 12 June 2019 Whether Schusser will be able to lead with the same deftness when Apple Music needs to innovate rapidly remains to be seen. Micah Singleton, Billboard, "Apple Music's Next Era -- And the New Leader Spurring Global Growth," 25 July 2019 Bhojwani figures that gives him carte blanche to innovate. National Geographic, "Here’s why every foodie you know is heading to Peru," 19 July 2019 So this was a way for entrepreneurs — for people like me and other entrepreneurs to start to innovate. Greg Jefferson,, "KIPP San Antonio founder on his new job, the tech mind set and fighting inequality," 24 June 2019 That’s clearly not the case for Madonna, who cemented her status as a global pop icon early in her career and never stopped innovating. Lila Maclellan, Quartz at Work, "Madonna has a message about aging and work that you probably need to hear," 8 June 2019

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

1548, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for innovate

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

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Statistics for innovate

Last Updated

31 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for innovate

The first known use of innovate was in 1548

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More Definitions for innovate



English Language Learners Definition of innovate

: to do something in a new way : to have new ideas about how something can be done

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More from Merriam-Webster on innovate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with innovate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for innovate

Spanish Central: Translation of innovate

Nglish: Translation of innovate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of innovate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on innovate

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one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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