noun, plural ra·di·os.

  1. wireless telegraphy or telephony: speeches broadcast by radio.
  2. an apparatus for receiving or transmitting radio broadcasts.
  3. a message transmitted by radio.


  1. pertaining to, used in, or sent by radio.
  2. pertaining to or employing radiations, as of electrical energy.

verb (used with object), ra·di·oed, ra·di·o·ing.

  1. to transmit (a message, music, etc.) by radio.
  2. to send a message to (a person) by radio.

verb (used without object), ra·di·oed, ra·di·o·ing.

  1. to transmit a message, music, etc., by radio.

noun plural -os

  1. the use of electromagnetic waves, lying in the radio-frequency range, for broadcasting, two-way communications, etc
  2. Also called (esp Brit): wireless an electronic device designed to receive, demodulate, and amplify radio signals from sound broadcasting stations, etc
  3. a similar device permitting both transmission and reception of radio signals for two-way communications
  4. the broadcasting, content, etc, of sound radio programmeshe thinks radio is poor these days
    1. the occupation or profession concerned with any aspect of the broadcasting of sound radio programmeshe’s in radio
    2. (modifier)relating to, produced for, or transmitted by sound radioradio drama
  5. short for radiotelegraph, radiotelegraphy, radiotelephone
  6. (modifier)
    1. of, relating to, employed in, or sent by radio signalsa radio station
    2. of, concerned with, using, or operated by radio frequenciesradio spectrum
  7. (modifier) (of a motor vehicle) equipped with a radio for communicationradio car

verb -os, -oing or -oed

  1. to transmit (a message) to (a person, radio station, etc) by means of radio waves

“wireless transmission of voice signals with radio waves,” 1907, abstracted from earlier combinations such as radio-receiver (1903), radiophone (1881), radio-telegraphy (1898), from radio- as a comb. form of Latin radius “beam.” Use for “radio receiver” is first attested 1913; sense of “sound broadcasting as a medium” is from 1913.

It is not a dream, but a probability that the radio will demolish blocs, cut the strings of red tape, actuate the voice “back home,” dismantle politics and entrench the nation’s executive in a position of power unlike that within the grasp of any executive in the world’s history. [“The Reading Eagle,” Reading, Pa., U.S.A., March 16, 1924]

Wireless remained more widespread until World War II, when military preference for radio turned the tables. As an adjective by 1912, “by radio transmission;” meaning “controlled by radio” from 1974. Radio _______ “radio station or service from _______” is recorded from 1920. A radio shack (1946) was a small building housing radio equipment.


1916, from radio (n.). Related: Radioed; radioing.


  1. The equipment used to generate, alter, transmit, and receive radio waves so that they carry information.


  1. Relating to or involving the emission of radio waves.

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