Definition of on–off in English:

Share this entry



1(Of a switch) having two positions, ‘on’ and ‘off’.
Example sentences
  • Power is preferably supplied to the at least two tilt switches through at least one battery and an on-off switch.
  • Anyone who has struggled to find the on-off switch on the computer will appreciate a new technology being developed by researchers at the Department of Engineering.
  • Though a tad awkward to use, the on-off switch on the back of the device lets you play songs in order, which you might want to do, say, if you just bought a new album.
2(Of a relationship) not continuous or steady: an on-off affair
More example sentences
  • However, the couple had continued with an on-off relationship and Mr Boyes sometimes stayed over at the house.
  • Meanwhile, Godfrey's on-off relationship with the sick room is continuing as the 14-try winger is struggling with tonsillitis, having shaken off a stubborn hamstring strain.
  • The Formula One boss, who has had a turbulent on-off relationship with the British beauty, set tongues wagging after it emerged he planned to host a lavish 35th birthday party for the beauty aboard his yacht in Cannes last.
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.