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Computer Peripherals

A peripheral is a piece of computer hardware that is added to a host computer, i.e any hardware except the computer, in order to expand its abilities. More specifically, the term is used to describe those devices that are optional in nature, as opposed to hardware that is either demanded or always required in principle.

The term also tends to be applied to devices that are hooked up externally, typically through some form of computer bus like USB. Typical examples include joysticks, printers, scanners, Wi-Fi adaptors, Bluetooth dongles and infra-red adaptors. Devices such as monitors and disk drives are not considered computer peripherals when they are not truly optional.

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