a portable computer, usually battery-powered, small enough to rest on the user's lap and having a screen that closes over the keyboard like a lid.Compare tablet(def 6).

Nearby words

  1. lapstrake,
  2. lapsus,
  3. lapsus calami,
  4. lapsus linguae,
  5. laptev sea,
  6. laptray,
  7. laputa,
  8. lapwing,
  9. laquei,
  10. laqueus

Origin of laptop

First recorded in 1980–85; lap1 + top1

Also called laptop computer. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for laptop

British Dictionary definitions for laptop


laptop computer


a personal computer that is small and light enough to be operated on the user's lapCompare palmtop computer
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 laptop


also lap-top, as a type of portable computer, 1984, from lap (n.) + top (1), on model of desktop.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for laptop


A portable, compact personal computer that can run on a battery.

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.