Updated: 02/01/2021 by Computer Hope

Transparent may refer to any of the following:

1. With hardware, transparent is a device that does nothing with data that passes through it. For example, a network hub passes all data to the other ports on the hub without analyzing any of the data. With software, a transparent program is a program that works so efficiently the user is unaffected or unaware that it is even working.

2. With an image or graphic, transparent refers to an image that is clear and can take the effect of any images behind it. Below is an example of the Computer Hope logo with a transparent background. The image is the same but looks different with each of the different colored backgrounds.

Computer Hope logo Computer Hope logo 2 Computer Hope logo 3 Computer Hope logo 4

Almost all image editors used today are capable of making a transparent image. If you're having trouble making an image transparent, make sure it's saved as a GIF or PNG format. To remove an image's transparency, flatten it in the image editor or by saving the image as a different format (e.g., JPG or JPEG). Additional help with creating transparent images is found in the document mentioned below.


The JPEG image format does not support transparency. To create a transparent image, use GIF or PNG.

3. When referring to color, transparent color is a color that lacks color or a color that's the same color as the background. For example, this text "example text" is red text with a red background, dragging the mouse and highlighting the red box shows the text. The text is transparent since it is the same color as the background.


There is no HTML transparent color code. If you wanted to have text with a transparent background, you would need to create a transparent image with the text in the image.

Related information

Color terms, GIF 89a, Opaque, Photoshop terms