a short, relatively high-pitched tone produced by a horn, electronic device, or the like as a signal, summons, or warning.
one of the periodic signals sounded by a beeper.

verb (used without object)

to make or emit such a sound: When the timer beeps, take the cake out of the oven.

verb (used with object)

to sound (a horn, warning signal, etc.): impatient drivers beeping their horns.
to announce, warn, summon, etc., by beeping: The doctor was beeped to call the hospital.

Origin of beep

First recorded in 1925–30; imitative Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for beep

Contemporary Examples of beep

  • When the battery gets low, they beep a lot, which causes people to disconnect them.

    The Daily Beast logo
    How to Hack the Perfect Home

    Daniel Gross

    November 15, 2013

Historical Examples of beep

  • "The beep's from the North Pole," the instrument man reported instantly.

    Thin Edge

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • The scanner began to beep and Roger turned his attention to the screen.

    Sabotage in Space

    Carey Rockwell

  • The automatic finder searched around for the Ravenhurst tickler signal, found it, and sent out a beep along the same channel.

    A Spaceship Named McGuire

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • Now Beryl should have beep upstairs marking the new linen and she should93 not be singing as though she owned the whole world.


    Jane Abbott

  • They have a long pole, or staff, in their hands to beep themselves from falling.

British Dictionary definitions for beep



a short high-pitched sound, esp one made by the horn of a car, bicycle, etc, or by electronic apparatus


to make or cause to make such a noise
Derived Formsbeeper, noun

Word Origin for beep

C20: of imitative origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for beep

1927, imitative of automobile horns (originally of the sound of a certain type of automobile horn among several types in use in the years after the klaxon horn was brought into use c.1910). Used as a noun and verb by 1929. Related: Beeped; beeping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper