Meaning of “hardware” in the English Dictionary

"hardware" in British English

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hardwarenoun [ U ]

uk /ˈhɑːd.weər/ us /ˈhɑːrd.wer/

hardware noun [ U ] (COMPUTER)

B1 the physical and electronic parts of a computer, rather than the instructions it follows

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Examples

  • Much of our existing military hardware is obsolescent.
  • The machine allows multitasking without the need to buy extra hardware.
  • The thieves stole thousands of pounds worth of computer hardware.
  • The cost of computer hardware has fallen in the last ten years.
  • All the old hardware has been dumped into a skip.

(Definition of “hardware” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"hardware" in American English

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hardwarenoun [ U ]

us /ˈhɑrdˌweər/

hardware noun [ U ] (TOOLS)

metal objects, materials, and equipment, such as tools:

a hardware store

hardware noun [ U ] (COMPUTER)

(Definition of “hardware” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"hardware" in Business English

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hardwarenoun [ U ]

uk /ˈhɑːdweər/ us

IT the physical and electronic parts of a computer or other piece of equipment, rather than its software:

The growth of the computer and consumer electronics industries is driven by a steady stream of advances in both hardware and software.
Its primary product is networking hardware.

metal tools, materials, and equipment, such as hammers and nails:

Environmental protection has increasingly affected the production of building materials and hardware.
If we make it easier for the hardware stores to sell our products, that helps us.

equipment, especially for industrial or military use:

The company's principal lines of business are air compressors, architectural hardware products, and construction equipment.
The modern-day battlefield is more congested than ever before with aircraft and military hardware.

(Definition of “hardware” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)