[ in-ter-ak-tiv ]
See synonyms for interactive on
  1. acting one upon or with the other.

  2. of or relating to a two-way system of electronic communications, as by means of television or computer: interactive communications between families using two-way cable television.

  1. (of a computer program or system) interacting with a human user, often in a conversational way, to obtain data or commands and to give immediate results or updated information: For many years airline reservations have been handled by interactive computer systems.

Origin of interactive

First recorded in 1825–35; inter- + active

Other words from interactive

  • in·ter·ac·tive·ly, adverb
  • non·in·ter·ac·tive, adjective

Words Nearby interactive Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use interactive in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for interactive


/ (ˌɪntərˈæktɪv) /

  1. allowing or relating to continuous two-way transfer of information between a user and the central point of a communication system, such as a computer or television

  2. (of two or more persons, forces, etc) acting upon or in close relation with each other; interacting

Derived forms of interactive

  • interactivity, noun

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

Cultural definitions for interactive


If users receive real-time feedback from a computer so that they can modify the use of the machine, the hardware, software, or content, the system is said to be interactive.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.