Updated: 11/13/2018 by Computer Hope

Equal is a value or data that is the same or equivalent to another value and is represented by the = symbol. The equal sign symbol shares the same key as the plus (+) on a keyboard and is next to the backspace key.

Where is the equals sign on the keyboard?

Below is an overview of a computer keyboard with the equals key highlighted in blue.

Equals sign key

Note: Apple computer keyboards with a numeric keypad also have an equal sign above the number eight.

How to create the = symbol

Creating the = symbol on a U.S. keyboard

To create an equals sign using a U.S. keyboard press the equals key, which is on the same key as the plus ( + ) and to the left of backspace or delete depending on your keyboard.

Creating the = symbol on a smartphone or tablet

To create a hyphen on a smartphone or tablet open the keyboard and go into the numbers (123) or symbols (sym) section and then press your finger on the = symbol.

What is the equals sign used for on a computer?

With computers, the equals sign is commonly used in programming and mathematics to show a total value or assign a value. The following sections contain some examples of how the equals sign is used.

Equals in a math formula

In a math formula, the equals sign shows the result of the formula. For example, in the formula below, you can see that 2 - 1 is equal to 1.

2 - 1 = 1

Equals in an excel formula

In Microsoft Excel and other spreadsheet programs, all formulas begin with the equal sign. In the formula below, all cells between A1 and A10 are added together, and the result is returned to the cell containing the formula.


Equals in computer programming

The equals sign is used in many programming languages to assign a variable a value as shown in the example below, which assigns the variable "$myvariable" the value of "Computer Hope."

my $myvariable = "Computer Hope";

An equal value in computer programming

In programming languages, the equal symbol is also an operator in a conditional statement. For example, eq or == (double equal sign) can be used to check if a value is equal to another value. In the example below, if the variable "$myval" is equal to 10, then print "The value equals 10," otherwise print "Value is not equal to 10" to the screen.

if ($myval == 10) {
print "The value equals 10";
} else { print "Value is not equal to 10";

Ge, Keyboard terms, Le, Ne, Programming terms