I. format for‧mat 1 [ˈfɔːmæt ǁ ˈfɔːr-] noun [countable]
1. COMPUTING the way in which information is arranged and stored in a computer file or on a disk. If the format is not right, a computer will not be able to read the information:

• The firm markets software that automatically converts data from one computer format to another.

2. MARKETING MANUFACTURING the size, shape, and design in which a book or magazine is produced:

• A larger format often means an increase in price.

3. a way of organizing, arranging or presenting something:

• The stores face competition from other retailers using the megastore format.

• News stations are searching for a new format that holds viewers and attracts the younger audience that advertisers seek.

  [m0] II. format format 2 verb formatted PTandPP formatting PRESPART [transitive]
1. COMPUTING to put an instruction into a computer in order to prepare a disk so that information can be stored on it in a way that the computer can read it:

• You'll need to format the disk before you can copy the files across.

2. to arrange information in a computer file, for example using particular software or a particular type of writing, page size etc:
format in

• The documents are all formatted in WordPerfect.

• Documents are generally formatted for A4.

3. to arrange a book, magazine, or page according to a particular design:

• The text has not been very well formatted.

— formatting noun [uncountable] :

• If we transfer the file, we may lose the formatting.

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format UK US /ˈfɔːmæt/ noun [C]
the size, design, materials, etc. used for a document, book, photo, etc.: »

The report should provide clear and concise information in a format designed to communicate the information effectively.


Documents must be submitted in paper format.

audio/digital/electronic format »

Once the photos are in a digital format, they can be edited.

IT the arrangement of information in a computer file: »

The program supports all of the major image file formats.


To view reports in PDF format, Adobe Acrobat Reader is required.

the way in which an activity, event, etc. is arranged or presented: »

Whatever form the conference takes next year, it is likely to be different to the format used this year.

format UK US /ˈfɔːmæt/ verb [T] (formatting, formatted, formats) IT
to prepare a computer disk for use in a particular type of computer
to organize the way text, pictures, etc. will appear, especially on a computer: »

Here are some tips on how to format the document.

Financial and business terms. 2012.