Definition of compatible in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /kəmˈpatɪb(ə)l/


(often compatible with)
1(Of two things) able to exist or occur together without problems or conflict: the careers structure here is not compatible with having a family
More example sentences
  • What existing NRCS programs are compatible with organic production, and how can organic producers find out information about these programs?
  • The guidelines would need to be compatible with existing procedures for consent in research and clinical care and consider any potential medicolegal issues.
  • Several detection methods exist that are compatible with the maximum information method.
1.1(Of two people) able to have a harmonious relationship; well suited: it’s a pity we’re not compatible
More example sentences
  • She later had an astrological chart drawn up on him and concluded that they were not compatible enough, according to Simmons.
  • Our relationship isn't perfect, and we're not completely compatible, but I feel like he's not giving us a chance if he decides to jump ship after only five months of dating.
  • M is my wife, and I had written that we are compatible in all respects, except for hang-ups regarding past relationships.
well suited, suited, well matched, like-minded, of the same mind, in agreement, in tune, in harmony, reconcilable
archaic accordant
1.2(Of one thing) consistent with another: the symptoms were compatible with gastritis or a peptic ulcer
More example sentences
  • Data from more than 300 deliveries indicate no birth defects compatible with congenital varicella syndrome.
consistent, reconcilable, consonant, congruous, congruent, fitting;
in keeping, in accord, in tune, in step
1.3 Computing (Of a computer, piece of software, etc.) able to be used with a specified piece of equipment or software without special adaptation or modification: the printer is fully compatible with all leading software
More example sentences
  • The main network protocols are open for anyone to use and produce compatible software.
  • Whether or not your laptop's dialing software was compatible with the hotel's PBX was a matter of doubt.
  • Because the system can transmit multiple text streams, it may also be used for language translation; its software is internationally compatible.


A computer that can use software designed for another make or type: packages available for IBM PCs and compatibles
More example sentences
  • For many, obviously, this signals quite a milestone - seeing as non-Mac desktop computers used to be referred to as IBM compatibles.
  • But it also wants to keep the extensibility and general-purpose functionality of an IBM compatible.



Example sentences
  • This TV adaptation, scripted by Emma Thompson and directed by Mike Nichols, is compatibly respectful, guttingly plausible, crushingly quiet.
  • As far as how they dress is concerned, when you dress compatibly, then it makes some kind of sense.
  • It follows that non-hybrid public authorities, such as central and local government, must act compatibly with Convention rights even when carrying out acts of a private nature, such as ordering stationery.


Late Middle English: from French, from medieval Latin compatibilis, from compati 'suffer with'.

Words that rhyme with compatible


For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: com¦pat|ible

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.