vaporware

play
noun va·por·ware \ˈvā-pər-ˌwer\

Definition of vaporware

  1. :  a computer-related product that has been widely advertised but has not and may never become available

vaporware was our Word of the Day on 11/01/2013. Hear the podcast!

Recent Examples of vaporware from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vaporware'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

The practice of marketing products before they are available for sale is common to many industries, but especially the computer industry, where technological advancement is rapid and competition cutthroat. Unforeseen glitches occasionally result in the marketing of products that ultimately never see the light of day. Since the 1980s, such phantom computer products have been referred to by the word vaporware, which is modeled after familiar computer terms such as software and hardware. The word plays on the humorous notion of vapors being equated with rumors surrounding the development of a product that appears to be on its way but that never actually materializes.

Origin and Etymology of vaporware

1vapor + -ware (in software)

Learn More about vaporware


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up vaporware? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

WORD OF THE DAY

marked by lack of plan or order

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Emoji Quiz

  • emoji-the-quiz
  • What phase of the moon is this: 🌖 ?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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