What is the difference between electrical and electronic devices?

What is the difference between electrical and electronic devices?

The words electrical and electronic seem to be used indiscriminately and with some overlap. But there is a subtle difference between electrical and electronic products which defines their respective purposes and functions. Anyone who begins to unfold the complex world of today's gadgets and systems will need to understand this difference first. In this comprehensive exploration, we will deal with the difference between electronic and electrical devices, their definitions, fundamental roles, device standards, and more. 

What is the difference between electrical and electronic devices?

Differentiating electrical and electronic devices encompasses various areas like their current function and device principle. We will discuss the primary differentiators in this segment. 

1. Definition

Electrical Device

An electrical device comprising conductive components, such as steel, aluminium, iron, etc., designed to transform electrical energy into an alternative form of energy. Take a motor, for instance; when energised, it efficiently converts electrical energy into mechanical energy. Subsequently, the motor can be utilised to propel various objects.

Electronic Devices

An electronic device is a gadget employing semiconductive elements, such as silicon, germanium, and the like, to facilitate electrical flow and execute specific functions. Take a mobile phone, for instance; its circuitry is predominantly composed of semiconductor materials. Upon activation, the mobile phone adeptly transforms electrical energy into intelligent operations, encompassing touch interactions, gesture control, networking capabilities, and memory management.

2. Device Principle (Voltage & Current)

Electrical Devices

Devices within the electric area basically produce voltage and are modern. These devices play a critical function in strength systems, offering vital energy for diverse applications.

Electronic Devices

Electronic gadgets, in assessment, consciousness on controlling voltage and present day. This management is accomplished through using lively components like transistors and diodes, taking into consideration the manipulation and amplification of electrical alerts.

3. Current Function (AC & DC)

Electrical Devices

Electrical devices operate on Alternating Current (AC). The AC power generated can be single-phase or three-phase, starting from 220V to 440V within the 'V' to 'kV' variety.

Electronic Devices

Electronic devices, on the other hand, exclusively function with Direct Current (DC). The voltage variety for digital gadgets is typically inside the 'mV' to 'V' range, with common rankings like 5V, 12V, 24V, and many others.

4. Function

Electrical Devices

Electrical gadgets are not designed to control records. They serve as generating, dispensing, or controlling electric electricity.

Electronic Devices

Electronic devices excel in statistics manipulation. They are designed to technique and manipulate information, making choices based on the entry received.

5. Electrical Power

Electrical Circuit

In electric circuits, the focus is on monitoring or controlling excessive electrical strength. This is evident in devices along with transformers, alternators, automobiles, mills, fuses, and circuit breakers.

Electronic Circuit

Electronic circuits, in contrast, are geared toward tracking or controlling low electricity. Examples encompass microcontrollers, which excel in efficiently dealing with and processing low-energy digital alerts.

6. Decision-Making Device

Electrical Device

Traditional electrical devices lack the capability to make choices independently. For example, an electrical bulb truly responds to the presence or absence of electrical strength.

Electronic Device

Electronic gadgets, exemplified by using modern technology like cellular phones, own the capacity to make short choices. This ability for decision-making units digital devices aside in phrases of functionality.

7. Energy Conversion

Electrical Devices

In electrical structures, electricity conversion involves remodelling electric strength into other forms along with warmth, movement, or light. This is exemplified in devices like heaters, electric vehicles, and lighting fixture systems.

Electronic Devices

Electronic power, but, does not go through the same degree of conversion. Electronic devices are commonly consciousness of manipulating and controlling electrical indicators without remodelling them into other kinds of electricity.

8. Size

Electrical Devices

Electrical gadgets have a tendency to occupy large spaces and require significant physical infrastructure. This is especially obtrusive in strength stations, transformers, and large-scale electrical equipment.

Electronic Devices

Conversely, electronic devices are characterised by their compact sizes. The miniaturisation of digital additives allows for the introduction of portable gadgets, making them without difficulty transportable.

Read Also: Best Electrical Safety Tips to Keep Your Home Safe

Electrical Device vs Electronic Device


Electrical device

Electronic device


An electrical device utilizes electrical energy for basic operations like heating or mechanical work

An electronic device employs electronic circuits to process and control information, enabling complex functions such as computing, communication, and automation, using semiconductor components like transistors and integrated circuits.


Electrical devices, like heaters and motors, are employed for tasks requiring basic energy conversion.

Electronic devices, such as computers and smartphones, are used for information processing, communication, and automation in daily life.


An electrical device is a system or apparatus that utilizes electrical energy for specific functions.These devices typically convert electrical energy into other forms, such as heat, mechanical work, or light, to perform their intended tasks.

An electronic device is a system or apparatus that relies on electronic circuits, often utilizing semiconductors, to process and control information.


Heaters, fans, motors

Computers, smartphones, television


Contains passive components only

Contains active components only

Materials used

Conductors are used for the flow of electricity

Semiconductors are used for the flow of electrons.

Examples of electrical and electronic devices in Schneider Electric

Now that you know about the difference between electrical and electronics devices, here is a list of electrical and electronic components used in various products you can check out. 

Electrical Devices

Examples of electrical devices consist of transformers, alternators, automobiles, generators, fuses, and circuit breakers. These devices form the backbone of energy structures and are essential for energy generation and distribution.

Circuit Breakers: Ensuring Electrical Safety and Performance

Discover our massive selection of circuit breakers and switches designed to control or interrupt contemporary glide in electrical distribution circuits. Whether operated mechanically or manually, our variety, from the famous ComPact moulded case circuit breaker (MCCB). Get the collection of moulded case circuit breakers (MCCB) at an affordable price and protects the electrical devices with SPD-time delay settings for the majority of uses. These devices play a vital function in presenting electric protection in the event of circuit overload or short circuits.

Schneider Electric TeSys LE enclosed DOL starter

The Schneider Electric TeSys LE enclosed DOL starter is a very stable motor control, with a capacity of 12 A and 220 V AC coil. It has a user-friendly green start and red stop, reset buttons, and meets IEC 60947-4-1 standards, conforming to the electrical standards used internationally. Its rugged construction features an IK07 mechanical impact guarantee and an IP65 water and dust resistance. It operates in temperatures from - 5 ° C to 40 ° C and also is UKCA certified, so it is an all-around time and energy saver both industrially and at home.

Electronic Devices

Electronic devices encompass a wide array of gadgets, which include diodes, transistors, thyristors, microcontrollers, and oscillators. These components discover applications in various electronic systems, from consumer electronics to advanced communique gadgets.

Schneider Electric Fan Regulators and Dimmers: Unmatched Performance for Homes and Offices

Explore Schneider Electric's complete variety of fan regulators and dimmers designed for homes and offices, supplying extremely good performance for future years. Our ceiling fan regulators, engineered for better software and consumer-friendly operation, utilise ultra-modern technology in substances and layout. Available in diverse suits and finishes, those regulators exhibit a dedication to pleasant.

  • LIVIA Range: Sleek wall-hugging layout with a classic end suitable for any interior.
  • Zencelo Range: Aesthetic, easy-cut layout for a modern-day look.
  • UNICA Pure and Opale Ranges: Black and white or satin finish electric devices for houses and offices.
  • AvatarOn Range: A current method perfect for ultra-present-day domestic or workplace setups.
  • Neo Range: Sleek layout to be used in hospitality, home, and workplace settings.
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