dongle

[ dong-guhl, dawng‐ ]
/ ˈdɒŋ gəl, ˈdɔŋ‐ /

noun Digital Technology.

a hardware device, paired with a licensed copy of a software program, that must be plugged into a computer to authorize every use of the software: an antipiracy dongle.
a device that can be plugged into a hardware port on a computer, television, or other electronic device, to enable access when connecting devices to peripherals, to the internet, or to each other:a USB dongle for wireless internet access;an HDMI dongle with television apps;a display port dongle to connect the laptop to the projector.

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Origin of dongle

First recorded in 1980–85; probably an arbitrary coinage
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for dongle

British Dictionary definitions for dongle

dongle
/ (ˈdɒŋɡəl) /

noun

computing an electronic device that accompanies a software item to prevent the unauthorized copying of programs
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