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What Does Device Mean?

A device is a unit of physical hardware or equipment that provides one or more computing functions within a computer system. It can provide input to the computer, accept output or both. A device can be any electronic element with some computing ability that supports the installation of firmware or third-party software.


Typical hardware includes a computer mouse, speakers, printer and microphone.

A device may also be referred to as an appliance, gadget or electronic tool.

Techopedia Explains Device

A device can be embedded in a computer or be connected outside of it, but all devices can be separately installed or replaced. That said, devices in notebook and other portable computers tend to me more integrated. There are contradictions about a device’s scope; whereas some believe the computer’s components, others say the computer is a device in and of itself. Moreover, with the advent of cloud computing and virtualization, virtual machines and other related instances are also considered devices.


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