Below is the Alt code keyboard shortcut for inserting the plus minus sign. If you are new to ALT codes and need detailed instructions on how to use them, please read How to Use ALT Codes to Enter Special Characters. The Alt code for the plus or minus (±) sign on Windows systems is 241 or 0177. To enter the plus or minus symbol using the Alt code, hold down the Alt key and, while keeping it pressed, type 241 or 0177 using the numeric keypad. Then, release the Alt key, and the plus or minus symbol (±) should appear. On an Apple Mac US keyboard, press the Option key, Shift key and the equal sign (=) key simultaneously. Please note that Alt codes may not work in all applications or with all keyboard configurations, as it depends on the specific settings and character encoding. If these methods do not work, simply copy and paste the plus or minus symbol below.
Click the plus minus sign symbol to copy:
|Symbol Name||Plus-minus sign|
|Windows Alt Code||ALT 241 or ALT 0177|
|Windows Alt X Code||00B1 ALT X|
|Mac Option Key Shortcut||Option + Shift + =|
Numeric Character Reference (Hexadecimal)
Numeric Character Reference (Decimal)
|Unicode Code Point||U+00B1|
Origin, Meaning and Usage of the Plus or Minus Sign Symbol ±
The plus or minus symbol (±) is a typographic symbol used to represent a range of values or to indicate that a number can be either positive or negative. It is used in mathematics, science, engineering, and other fields where the expression of uncertainty or alternatives is necessary.
The plus or minus symbol (±) consists of a plus sign (+) and a minus sign (-) connected together. It is placed before a value to indicate that the actual value may be either greater or smaller than the given value.
The symbol is commonly used to represent a range or uncertainty in measurements, tolerances, or margins of error. For example:
- If a measurement is given as 10 ± 2, it means the value can be either 10 plus 2 (12) or 10 minus 2 (8). So the range is from 8 to 12.
- In mathematics, the quadratic formula is often expressed as x = (-b ± √(b² – 4ac))/(2a), where the plus or minus symbol indicates that there are two possible solutions for x.
The plus or minus symbol can also be used to express positive and negative options or alternatives. For example:
- In an equation, x ± 3 could represent two equations: x + 3 and x – 3.
- In music notation, the symbol may be used to indicate that a note can be played either higher or lower by a small interval.
When using the plus or minus symbol, it’s important to ensure that its meaning is clear within the context of its usage, as it can represent both ranges of values and alternatives.
In mathematical equations or scientific notation, the plus or minus symbol (±) provides a concise way to express uncertainty, variation, or alternative possibilities, allowing for more comprehensive and accurate representations of information.
The plus or minus symbol (±) is a part of the set of ALT Codes for Math Symbols: Basic Operators, Relations & Symbols. For the the complete list of the ASCII based Windows ALT Codes, refer to Windows ALT Codes for Special Characters & Symbols.