Types of Computer Peripherals & Examples (With Images)

Welcome to a guide on the various types of computer peripherals. Once upon a time in the dark cyber ages, computers are boring boxes that crunch data. This is all fine, but computers have very limited uses otherwise.

It was only through the course of many years that smart people invented more computer gadgets, devices, and peripherals that changed the way we interact with computers. Just what different kinds of gadgets do we have in the world now? Let us walk through some common computer peripherals in this guide. Read on!

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

The Basics Input Devices Output Devices
Input & Output Devices Useful Bits The End

 

 

PERIPHERAL BASICS

Before we go into the list of computer peripherals, let us start with some of the quick basics.

 

WHAT IS A COMPUTER PERIPHERAL?

In simple terms, the core parts of a computer are:

  • The motherboard
  • CPU
  • Power supply
  • RAM
  • Primary storage or hard disk

A computer peripheral is simply “a device that is plugged into a computer, not a part of the core architecture”. Yep, since computers can function without keyboards and mice, they are considered to be “peripheral” and not “core architecture”.

 

TYPES OF PERIPHERAL DEVICES

There are all sorts of gadgets in the market these days, but they are generalized into 3 categories:

  • Input – Devices that feed the computer with data.
  • Output – Devices that display results or perform some actions.
  • Devices that do both input and output

We will walk through all of these in more detail below, and give some example devices of each category.

 

INTERNAL & EXTERNAL PERIPHERALS

Apart from the 3 categories above, we also have “internal and external” peripherals.

  • Internal – Devices that are installed inside the computer itself. Also considered to be “permanent fixtures”.
  • External – Devices that can be connected to the computer without opening up the casing (or connected wirelessly). Considered as “plug-and-play”, generally portable devices.

 

 

INPUT DEVICES

Input devices are used to feed all kinds of data into the computer, allowing users to communicate and send instructions for further processing.

 

KEYBOARD

Does this gadget look familiar? The device that you type with? I am sure that you already know what a keyboard is and what it does.

 

MOUSE

I am sure that you already know this one as well. A mouse controls the cursor on the screen and allows you to interact with several elements. But there are actually several different types of the computer mouse – You can read my other guide if you are interested:

9 Types of Computer Mouse (With Pictures)

 

GAMEPAD

Ergonomically designed for the gamers, so they can… press faster and more accurately.

 

 

MICROPHONE

Microphones convert sound into electrical signals, allowing the computer to record audio, or to transmit them across networks for communications.

 

WEBCAM

Adds a video camera to your computer, and converts images into data. Allows you to record videos, stream live videos on the Internet, or use it for a video call.

 

BARCODE SCANNERS

A barcode reader is not a household item, but you have probably seen them in supermarkets and some shops. They are also commonly used in warehouses to keep track of the movement of goods.

 

OUTPUT DEVICES

An input device feeds information into the computer, and output devices do the opposite; The computer feeds data into the output device instead, usually delivering the results of what the user wanted – For example, playing a sound on the speakers, or showing a video on the screen.

 

MONITOR

The device that you are reading off right now. Guess it needs no further introductions.

 

SPEAKERS

Allows the computer to produce sound, playback music. If you prefer to have some privacy, use a pair of earphones or headphones instead.

 

PRINTERS

Printers print whatever document or picture you want onto a piece of paper and are considered to be output devices. But with an all-in-one printer – They can print, fax, and scan all at the same time, making it both an input and output device.

 

 

3D PRINTER

The “upgraded” printer that prints using plastic filaments instead. Yep, they can pretty much “manufacture” whatever object you want, as long as you have the 3D model of it.

 

INPUT & OUTPUT DEVICES

Finally, as you can guess, there are devices that do both input and output; These devices are capable of both sending and receiving data from the computer.

 

STORAGE DEVICES

External hard disks, flash drives, and memory card readers. This is both an input and output device as you can store your extra files in it, and also copy your files out of it.

 

NETWORK ADAPTERS

Just like storage devices, network adapters deal with data, but not the storage. They transmit and retrieve data between several computer devices instead.

 

TOUCH SCREENS

The handy modern-day screen acts as a monitor, and will also respond to your touch gestures.

 

 

VIRTUAL REALITY (VR) HEADSETS

A tech toy that offers you 360 degrees immersive 3D experience into the virtual world. Some people may think that these headsets are simply video output devices, but remember that they have motion sensors that will follow your head as well.

 

USEFUL BITS & LINKS

That’s all for this guide, and here is a small section on some extras and links that may be useful to you.

 

LINKS & REFERENCES

 

THE END

Thank you for reading, and we have come to the end of this guide. I hope that this has helped you to better understand the various types of computer peripherals, and if you have anything to share with this guide, please feel free to comment below. Good luck and happy computing. May the cyber force be with you.

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