switch Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “switch” in the English Dictionary

"switch" in British English

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switchnoun

uk   us   /swɪtʃ/
  • switch noun (DEVICE)

B1 [C] a ​smalldevice, usually ​pushed up or down with ​yourfinger, that ​controls and ​turns on or off an ​electriccurrent: a ​light switch Can you ​flip the switch?switches [plural] US (mainly UK points) a ​place on a ​railwaytrack where the rails (= ​metalbars on which the ​trainstravel) can be ​moved to ​allow a ​train to ​change from one ​track to another: The ​trainrattled as it went over the switches.

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switchverb [T, I usually + adv/prep]

uk   us   /swɪtʃ/
B1 to use a switch to ​change a ​device from one ​state or ​type of ​operation to another: switch the TV off/on

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B2 to ​changesuddenly or ​completely, ​especially from one thing to another, or to ​exchange by ​replacing one ​person or thing with another: She ​startedstudyingEnglish, but switched to Law in her second ​year. In 1971, ​Britain switched over (= ​changedcompletely) to a ​decimalcurrency. After the ​bankrobbery, the ​gang switched ​cars (= ​left one ​car and got into another).

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

"switch" in American English

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switchnoun [C]

 us   /swɪtʃ/
  • switch noun [C] (DEVICE)

a ​device that ​controls an ​electriccurrent and ​turns it on or off: Flip a switch and the ​coffee makes itself.
  • switch noun [C] (STICK)

a ​thinstick that ​bendseasily and is used esp. for ​hittinganimals
  • switch noun [C] (CHANGE)

a ​sudden or ​completechange from one thing to another, or an ​exchange of one ​person or thing for another: The ​team made a switch to a ​smaller, ​quickerlineup.

switchverb [I/T]

 us   /swɪtʃ/
  • switch verb [I/T] (CHANGE)

to ​changesuddenly or ​completely from one thing to another, or to ​exchange one ​person or thing with another: [T] Jeff ​decided to switch his ​major from ​engineering to ​medicine. [I] I used to have ​tapes, but I switched to ​CDs.
(Definition of switch from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"switch" in Business English

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switchnoun

uk   us   /swɪtʃ/
a complete ​change of one thing for another: a switch from/to sth The switch to a ​flatrate of ​tax could ​boostspending. Banks are encouraging ​customers to make the switch from ​paper to ​electronicstatements.
COMMUNICATIONS, IT a ​piece of ​equipment in a network that receives ​electronicdata and ​sends it to the ​rightplace
a ​smallpart or ​object that you ​move or ​press to make a ​light come on, make a ​machinestartworking, etc.: press/flick the switch

switchverb

uk   us   /swɪtʃ/
[I or T] to ​change from one thing, ​system, etc. to another, or make something do this: switch to sth Internetusers should consider switching to a web-based ​bank.switch from sth to sth The ​charity has switched from TV ​advertising to ​directmail.switch provider(s)/supplier(s) You could ​savemoney by switching ​energysuppliers. The ​reportfound that only about 6% of ​currentaccountcustomers switch ​banks each ​year. switch ​brand/​mortgage/​service
Phrasal verbs
(Definition of switch from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“switch” in Business English

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