The Approximately Equal symbol (≈) in mathematics is used to indicate the similarity between two expressions, but not the exact equality of the expressions. In visual terms, the symbol is a squiggly equal sign.
The purpose of today’s article is to provide instructions on how to type the Approximately Equal symbol using either Microsoft Word or Excel on a Mac or Windows computer.
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About Approximately Equal Symbol
Use the numeric keypad, and type 247, then release the Alt key, to type the Approximately symbol on the keyboard. Mac users should press Option+X.
In the following table, you’ll find quick instructions for typing in the Approximately Equal to Symbol on your Mac or Windows computer.
In addition to copying and pasting the symbol, you can also paste it directly into your document.
Approximately Equal to can be typed on your mac by pressing Option+X.
Press and hold the Alt key on your Windows keyboard, then press 247 on the numeric keypad to use the Approximately Equal symbol alt code.
The approximate equal to the operator is sometimes represented with a number of symbols, including the tilde ( ~ ).
Although almost equal to was the most commonly used symbol, the sign ( ~ ) has also been widely used.
As described above, the ‘Approximately Equal To’ symbol offers some helpful information.
You can also add this symbol to your Word or Excel document using the detailed options below.
How to Type Approximately Equal sign (≈) in Word/Excel
Word, Excel, and PowerPoint offer several different options for typing symbols.
In this section, we will examine different methods you can use in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint to type or insert the Approximately Equal to symbol.
Method 1: Using Approximately Equal Alt Code for Windows
247 is the alt code for the Approximately Equal symbol.
And, there is no dedicated key on the keyboard for the ‘Approximately Equal to’ symbol.
Using the Alt Numpad input method, also known as the Alt code input method, you can easily type this symbol on a Windows PC.
Upon entering (247), press and hold the Alternate key as you type the approximate equal symbol.
On Windows OS, this method can be used in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
Even so, you will need a numerical keypad for your PC. You won’t be able to enter numbers if your keyboard lacks a numeric keypad.
Use the Alt Code method to type this symbol:
- The insertion pointer should be placed where the symbol is needed.
- Your keyboard’s Alt key should be held down.
- Press the symbol’s alt code (247) while holding down the Alt key. Type the alt code using the numeric keypad.
- Using this method may not work if your laptop does not have a numeric keypad. If you press Fn+NmLk on the keyboard, you can access the hidden numeric keypad.
- In order to insert the Symbol into your document, release the Alt key once the numeric keypad numbers have been entered.
This is how the Alt Code method allows you to type the Approximately Equal symbol on Windows.
Method 2: Approximately Equal Shortcut for Mac
You can access the Approximately Equal symbol on the Mac by using Option+X.
You can type this symbol on Mac using the keyboard shortcut by following these steps:
- First, start by Placing the insertion pointer at the place where you want the symbol.
- Once you have Option pressed and your keyboard is free, press X once.
You can type the Approximately Equal symbol anywhere on your Mac by using this keyboard shortcut.
Method 3: Using Symbol Dialog Box
Symbols from the insert symbol dialog box are available for quick insertion into your Word document.
Incorporate this symbol into Word, Excel, or PowerPoint by selecting this option.
To insert the Approximately Equal symbol into Word, follow the steps below.
- Click where you would like to place the symbol.
- Navigate to the Insert tab.
- Click the More Symbols drop-down menu in the Symbols category.
- This will open a dialog box for the Symbol. Symbols in this category, which include the Approximately Equal sign, can be displayed by selecting Mathematical Operators from the Subset drop-down list.
- Click the Insert button when you have selected the symbol. The symbol can also be inserted by double-clicking on it.
The symbol will be inserted at the exact point where the pointer is placed.
Method 4: Copying and Pasting Approximately Equal Symbol
Using my favorite method, copy and paste is another easy way to insert the Almost Equal Symbol.
No matter if you are using Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, this option works everywhere.
You just need to copy the symbol from somewhere, such as the character map on a Windows computer, and then paste it wherever you need it.
We can copy and paste the symbol into our document.
You can copy it by pressing Ctrl+C and switch to where you want to paste it by pressing Ctrl+V.
The Approximately equal symbol may also be copied and pasted from the character map dialog using the steps provided below.
- Search for Character Map by clicking on the Start button.
- Then click or press Enter to launch the app.
- The dialog box for Character Map will appear. Expand the dialog box by selecting the Advanced view check box.
- If you’re in advanced mode, enter Almost Equal.
- Now the character map dialog should only show the Approximately Equal to sign. The symbol must be double-
- clicked to be selected. You can also click Select.
- Click on the Copy icon after you select the symbol.
- Click on Ctrl+V to paste the document where it is needed (Word, PowerPoint, Excel).
Symbols on Windows PC can be copied and pasted using the Character Map dialog box using this method.
Method 5: AutoCorrect to Type Approximately Equal Symbol
Alternatively, you can use the AutoCorrect option in Word to obtain the Approximately Equal.
The AutoCorrect feature in Microsoft Word corrects spelling errors automatically.
Your own shortcuts can be assigned to symbols you frequently use in your document with this feature.
It is possible, for instance, to assign a shortcode to the symbol Approximately Equal if you find yourself repeatedly typing it.
When you type APROX=, Word will interpret it as the Approximately Equal symbol, converting it into the symbol if you actually intended to type *.
When you use AutoCorrect, your symbol can be assigned any code you like, and Word will fill in the code for you when you type it.
Here are the steps to follow:
- Select the Insert tab. Click the More Symbols drop-down menu in the Symbols category.
- This will open a dialog box for the Symbol. You can select Mathematical Operators to display all symbols in the Mathematical Operators category, including the Approximately Equal symbol, by clicking on the Subset drop-down list.
- Click on the AutoCorrect button when you have selected the symbol.
- A dialog box for AutoCorrect will appear. You will need to enter the symbol’s shortcode or text in the Replace: field. Ensure that the field With: is set to Approximately Equal.
- Then hit the OK button.
As a result, whenever you type APROX= into your Word document, it will automatically convert into Approximately Equal Symbol.
Here are a few things you should keep in mind when using the AutoCorrect Method in Word to type Approximately Equal.
- The AutoCorrect feature is case-sensitive. Therefore, Word will not automatically correct APROX= (in lowercase) unless you type APROX= (in uppercase). This will be the case that Word will assume when you assign the AutoCorrect text.
- The AutoCorrect text will not be autocorrected if there is any text before or after it. If XAPROX= joins with another character X, it will not be converted.
As you can see, there are several options available to you depending on your PC or laptop’s version of Word, Excel, or PowerPoint.
Shortcuts are the fastest way to do this on both Windows and Mac.
In the comments section below, please feel free to share your thoughts and ask any questions about the approximately equal symbol.