sand·​box | \ ˈsan(d)-ˌbäks How to pronounce sandbox (audio) \

Definition of sandbox

1 : a box or receptacle containing loose sand especially : a box that contains sand for children to play in
2 : a place, area, or environment that provides opportunities for variation and experimentation in a way suggestive of children playing in a sandbox The Suttle Lodge is not a full-service hotel. Instead, it is better thought of as a sandbox: it provides all the amenities for you to create your own ideal experience.— Lance Richardson : such as
a : a video game or part of a video game in which the player is not constrained to achieving specific goals and has a large degree of freedom to explore, interact with, or modify the game environment … Untitled Goose Game is a sandbox in which objectives sometimes feel more like suggestions. I still want to get back in there and just mess with people more—see what happens when I get certain characters to chase me into certain areas, or if others will react to particular items.— Nathan Grayson often used before another noun a sandbox gameVideo games played in sandbox mode, or purpose-built sandbox games, allow the player access to the whole world (the box) at once, and allow her to change that world at will (the sand). There is no preset narrative to force the player to run, hide, or shoot, and no marauders to destroy what she has built.— Alexandra Lange
b : an isolated environment on an electronic device (such as a computer) within which applications cannot affect other programs or data on the device Software development often occurs inside a sandbox, defined as a confined virtual environment in which one or several developers can freely and safely experiment with untested code and new technologies.— Janine Gianfredi Businesses should add an application to their email systems that tags all emails containing a link or attachment. If an employee clicks on the link or attachment, the application launches it in a safe digital environment, called a sandbox, preventing any malicious application from infecting the employee's device or any others connected to it.— Cameron G. Shilling
c business : a controlled environment supervised by a regulatory authority within which existing regulations are relaxed or removed to allow businesses to more freely experiment with new products and services The sandbox enables the development of telemedicine services with close monitoring of all aspects of safety, including clinical processes, medication delivery and data protection, while co-creating the appropriate regulations.— Raymond Chua Other efforts of Carolina Fintech Hub include finding ways to leverage the local supplies of venture capital and corporate capital to help good ideas grow. The organization is working with the North Carolina General Assembly members to bring forth a first-of-its-kind fintech sandbox, which would create a business-friendly environment for fintech startup activity.Charlotte Business Journal (North Carolina)

Examples of sandbox in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Wright is clearly having fun in this sandbox, and there’s a reason the Chung-hoon Chung-shot film is playing in Dolby Cinema. Scott Mendelson, Forbes, 29 Oct. 2021 While Anderson may get dinged for playing in the same sandbox every time, there’s a sense that Villeneuve is adding new elements to his cinematic repertoire with each project — and this is his biggest canvas yet. Nate Jones, Vulture, 22 Oct. 2021 Politics can be ego-driven as well as cash-driven: Lots of lawmakers, after all, just want to guard their piece of the congressional sandbox and yelp whenever prestigious committee posts or credit for a Dear Colleague letter appears threatened. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, 21 Sep. 2021 The situation has gone somewhat viral, bringing to mind an army of scabs from the accounting department playing like toddlers in a sandbox. Molly Osberg, The New Republic, 19 Oct. 2021 The privacy and security offered by GrapheneOS centers on using an app sandbox to create secure boundaries as protection from vulnerabilities while aiming to not overly impact the user experience. Adam Speight, Wired, 29 Sep. 2021 Working in the Mars Terrain Simulator at an Italian sandbox run by ALTEC (a joint subsidiary of Thales Alenia Space and ASI), the twin dug down 1.7 meters or more than 5.5 feet. Elizabeth Howell, Forbes, 21 Sep. 2021 But one hallowed corner of Hollywood still evades him: Venom getting to play in the sandbox with Spider-Man and the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Andrea Mandell, USA TODAY, 30 Sep. 2021 The Libertas booth offered up homegrown Utah legislative wins to lawmakers from other states — advocating primarily for digital privacy and the first-of-its-kind universal regulatory sandbox passed this year by the Utah Legislature. Luke Peterson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 9 Aug. 2021

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

1572, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for sandbox

Time Traveler

The first known use of sandbox was in 1572

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Dictionary Entries Near sandbox

sand borer


sandbox tree

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Statistics for sandbox

Last Updated

7 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sandbox.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for sandbox



English Language Learners Definition of sandbox

: a low box filled with sand that children can play in


sand·​box | \ ˈsand-ˌbäks How to pronounce sandbox (audio) \

Kids Definition of sandbox

: a large low box for holding sand especially for children to play in

More from Merriam-Webster on sandbox

Nglish: Translation of sandbox for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sandbox for Arabic Speakers


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