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See also: handy and händy


English Wikipedia has an article on:


Originating as a nickname for a handy person.

Proper noun[edit]


  1. A surname transferred from the nickname.
  2. (rare) A male given name from English.





Some sources claim the existence of an early English preform. Perhaps from English handie-talkie, apparently used as a Motorola product name based on walkie-talkie. Or perhaps derived from English handheld transceiver, coined by CB radio users, later informally applied to the first mobile phones, and soon found in product names.

Others assert the use for a phone is exclusively German, possibly as a short form of Handfunktelefon, as which it was marketed by firms like Bosch and Hagenuk.[1] Thus equivalent to an anglicisation of Hand (hand) +‎ -i (diminutive suffix).


  • IPA(key): /ˈhɛndi/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛndi


Handy n (strong, genitive Handys, plural Handys or (now nonstandard) Handies)

  1. (mobile telephony) mobile phone, mobile, cell phone, phone (portable, wireless telephone)
    Synonyms: Mobiltelefon, (Switzerland) Natel
    • 1994 May 11, Ralf Schlüter, “Stimmungen frei Hand”, in Berliner Zeitung[1]:
      Alle paar Minuten hängt er am Handy und macht Termine klar.
      Every few minutes he's on his cell phone arranging appointments.
    • 2008, Ulrich Breymann and Heiko Mosemann, Java me, Hanser Verlag, →ISBN, p. 283:
      Bluetooth ist eine drahtlose Kommunikationstechnologie. Der Ursprung dieser Technologie liegt im Jahre 1994, als die Firma Ericsson eine Alternative zu Kabeln für die Verbindung ihrer Handys zum Zubehör wie Headsets suchte.
      Bluetooth is a wireless communication technology. This technology originated in 1994, when Ericsson was looking for an alternative to cables for connecting their cell phones to accessories like headsets.
    • 2009, Ernst Stahl, E-Commerce-Leitfaden, ibi research, →ISBN, p.123:
      Der Kunde hält sein Handy zum Bezahlen einfach an ein Lesegerät und der Betrag wird von seinem Konto abgebucht.
      To pay, the customer just holds his cell phone up to a reader and the amount is deducted from his account.
    • 2018, “Unwiederbringlich”, in Die Unendlichkeit, performed by Tocotronic:
      Es gab noch keine Handys / Es war alles Gegenwart
      (please add an English translation of this quote)


Derived terms[edit]


  • ? English: handy

Further reading[edit]

  • Handy” in Digitales Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache
  • Handy” in Uni Leipzig: Wortschatz-Lexikon
  • Handy” in Duden online
  • Wikipedia-logo-v2.svg Handy on the German Wikipedia.Wikipedia de


  1. ^ Elizabeth M Christopher, International Management: Explorations Across Cultures, Kogan Page Publishers, 2012, p. 272.



Via German Handy, from English handy.



Handy m (plural Handyen)

  1. mobile phone, mobile
    Hien däerf den Handy vu sengem eelere Brudder benotzen.
    He may use his elder brother's mobile phone.