tele·​pres·​ence ˌte-lə-ˈpre-zən(t)s How to pronounce telepresence (audio)
: technology that enables a person to perform actions in a distant or virtual location as if physically present in that location
I was evaluating a new kind of robot that could allow a travel-weary executive to visit any office in the world without ever leaving his or her own desk. The technology is called telepresence, and it takes advantage of the vast information-carrying capacity of the Internet.Mark Alpert
The system was developed with funding from the U.S. Army with the main goal of allowing the surgeon to operate through telepresence at a safe distance from a wounded soldier on the battlefield.Craig D. Turner
also : the practice of using such technology in the remote operation of a machine (such as a robot)
In telepresence the movements of a human operator on Earth are electronically transmitted to a robot that can reproduce the movements on another planet's surface. Paul D. Spudis
While it may seem gimmicky, the fact that telepresence robots offer their controllers a mobile physical presence in another place has a powerful influence on social interactions. Helen Knight
: the experience of using telepresence technology
It'll take a while before cumbersome VR headsets slim down for everyday use. That's why, inside fledgling startups and tech giants like Google and Facebook, designers are concocting products to make telepresence more compelling and are adding features unique to the digital realm. Collaborative documents, whiteboards, AR, AI.Steven Levy

Examples of telepresence in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Last night, Suitable Technologies opened a brand new store in the middle of Palo Alto, Calif., to give people a way to try out the Beam telepresence not-a-robot. IEEE Spectrum, 15 Feb. 2023 This technology—known as telepresence—goes well beyond mere communications and pixel-pushing. Christopher Mims, WSJ, 22 Oct. 2020 Sanctuary Sanctuary’s plan is to start with telepresence and use that as a foundation on which to iterate toward general-purpose autonomy. IEEE Spectrum, 16 May 2023 Here are just a few examples of industries in which telepresence robots could be employed. Craig Goodliffe, Forbes, 26 Jan. 2023 Chiu was not the only one to acknowledge the changes that Covid-19 has made to the world of telepresence robots. WIRED, 12 Oct. 2022 Each was once a normal human who was physically mutilated and infected to become yet another sexless, selfless vehicle for the parasite, little more than a telepresence system for it. Liz Braswell, WSJ, 25 Nov. 2022 This week at Google I/O, their annual conference focused on the press, analysts and developers the company made two important XR announcements, the first an upgrade to mobile AR maps (Google Live Maps) and then a photorealistic volumetric telepresence system named Starline. Charlie Fink, Forbes, 21 May 2021 Visiting via telepresence is nothing like being there. Wade Roush, Scientific American, 1 Feb. 2020 See More

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

Word History


tele- + presence

First Known Use

1980, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of telepresence was in 1980

Dictionary Entries Near telepresence

Cite this Entry

“Telepresence.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Sep. 2023.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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