Updated: 11/12/2023 by Computer Hope

Back may refer to any of the following:

1. When describing a physical object, its back refers to the side of an object that is not visible, opposite the front side. For example, on the front of your computer is where the power button, CD-ROM (compact disc read-only memory), and other drives may be located. The back of the computer is where all the cables are connected. See our connection page for a visual example of the back of the computer, and explanations of the various connections.

2. On an Android device, such as a tablet or smartphone, pressing a back button returns you to the previous screen or exits the current menu.

Back button

3. The back button is a user interface feature that takes a user back to their previous location. For instance, in an Internet browser, clicking the back button takes you back to the last web page you visited.

The back button only works if there is a previous page in your browsing history. For example, it won't work in a new browser window or tab.


In all browsers, the keyboard shortcut for the back button is Alt and . Also, the backspace key works in many browser to go back.


Desktop users with a mouse with a thumb button can use that button to go back a page. Laptop and Chromebook users with a touchpad can swipe two fingers to go back.


To return to the page you came back from you can use the forward button after using the back button.

Back arrow, Backspace, Backward compatible, Browser, Connections, Hardware terms, Previous, Software terms