Disappearing hyphens 正在消失的连字符

"I have seen 'smartphone' written as one word - 'smartphone', as well as with a space and with a hyphen. Which is correct? It's driving me crazy!"

Chen Wenyu

How do you write 智能手机 in English?

Is it: smartphone, smart-phone or smart phone?

With a hyphen, a space, or as one word?

This is an example of a technological term which has recently entered the English language. Others are:

Website, email, webpage

What often happens with technological terms is that when they first appear, they have a hyphen or space:

Web-site, e-mail, web-page

Over time, as people get used the concept and word, the hyphen tends to disappear!

But is it smart phone, smart-phone or smartphone? Listen to the programme to find out the answer.

If you have a question you'd like us to answer, you can write to us or email: questions.chinaelt@bbc.co.uk

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