Phonetic alphabet

Updated: 12/31/2022 by Computer Hope

A phonetic alphabet is an alphabet with an assigned name to each of the letters. For example, to say "computer," you would say "Charlie-Oscar-Mike-Papa-Uniform-Tango-Echo-Romeo." Using the phonetic alphabet is useful for computer support over the phone when words or commands need to be spelled out.

For example, a technician could say to type "c" as in "Charlie" and "d" as in "delta" at the command line for the cd command. Without using the phonetic alphabet, the user may type "cb" or something else because of a misunderstanding of what the technician is saying over the phone.

Phonetic alphabet overview

Below is an example of the commonly used NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) phonetic alphabet.

A Alfa (al-fah) N November (no-vem-ber)
B Bravo (brah-voh) O Oscar (oss-car)
C Charlie (char-lee) P Papa (pah-pah)
D Delta (dell-tah) Q Quebec (keh-beck)
E Echo (eck-oh) R Romeo (row-me-oh)
F Foxtrot (foks-trot) S Sierra (see-air-rah)
G Golf (golf) T Tango (tang-go)
H Hotel (hoh-tel) U Uniform (you-nee-form)
I India (in-dee-ah) V Victor (vic-tah)
J Juliet (jew-lee-ett) W Whiskey (wiss-key)
K Kilo (key-loh) X X-ray (ecks-ray)
L Lima (lee-mah) Y Yankee (yang-key)
M Mike (mike) Z Zulu (zoo-loo)

Morse code, Support