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Home » What’s the Difference Between Ability and Capability?

What’s the Difference Between Ability and Capability?

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Key Difference: Ability and Capability are two different words in the English language, and many people think that both are the same or similar to each other. If you are one among them, then we will enlighten you with a simple explanation and let you understand the difference between them. The word Ability refers to the capacity, power, and skills to do some task. Whereas, Capability refers to the hidden potential or the extent level of someone’s ability.

Ability: He has the ability to play football well.
Capability: Powerful weapons have the capability to destroy the area.

Ability Vs Capability


Ability Pin

Having the skill to do something

The term “Ability” refers to the capacity, power, skills, and potential to do something in a better way. We can use this word mostly in the present tense because it refers to the capacity to do something currently. Ability is a noun. The ability will speak about the natural talent of a person. Let’s see an example scenario to understand it clearly. Tom has the ability to clean the whole house in an hour. In this sentence, we understand that the person called Tom can clean the house within an hour. It is his ability.


Syllables are phonological building blocks of words. It divides the words into parts that can help you read words more accurately. Let’s see how to split the word affect using syllables. Learning syllables can also help you to spell words correctly. 

  • The word “Ability” has four syllables
  • It can be divided as “A-bil-i-ty.”

How do we Pronounce “Ability”:

“Ability” Pronunciation

More Examples:

  • George has the ability to do the task perfectly.
  • She has the ability to organize a party.
  • You should have the ability to work under pressure.
  • The manager encourages the ability of all employees.
  • Robert has the ability to learn many languages.



Extent level of ability or potential

The word capability refers to the extent level of ability or potential to finish the task. Capability means unrealized potential. For instance, the person may be capable, when he/she gets the chance to develop a skill or ability. The word capability is a noun. For example, our manager tells us that we have the capability to enhance the reputation of the company. In this sentence, we might understand that the employees who work in this company have the potential to work for the growth of the company.


Syllabification refers to the process of division of words into smaller parts. It is commonly known as syllables. With its help, you can easily read and spell the word accurately. Here, you will see how to split the word “Capability” by syllables. 

  • The word “Capability” has five syllables
  • It can be divided as “Ca-pa-bil-i-ty.”

How do we Pronounce “Capability”:

“Capability” Pronunciation

More Examples:

  • She has the capability to become a famous artist.
  • The group of students proved their capability by successfully finishing the project.
  • There are totally seven capabilities that people have.
  • This application has both importing and exporting capabilities.
  • We don’t have the capability to run faster.

Compare: Ability Vs Capability

This table will show you the contradiction between the words Ability and Capability.

DefinitionIt refers to the natural skill or potentialIt refers to the extent level of ability or potential
Synonymspotential, power, capacity, skill, cleverness, qualification, aptitudeability, potential, competence, intelligence, experience, talent
Antonymsinability, incapacityinability, incompetence
Parts of Speechnounnoun
Used forindividualgroup of people
Etymologylate Middle English: from Old French ablete, from Latin habilitas, from habilis ‘able’.From French capable “able, sufficient; able to hold,” or directly from Late Latin capabilis “receptive; able to grasp or hold,”
ExamplesShe has the ability to drive the car safely.
The boy has the ability to run faster.
Do you have the ability to finish the work?
I have the ability to read and write at the same time.
Lion is a king of the forest with extraordinary capabilities.
We did not have the capability to implement further steps.
Our boys have the capability to understand the techy things.
Android mobiles have the capability to take pictures with both front and rear cameras.
Ability Vs Capability

Resources and References:

Resources: Cambridge Dictionary (Ability, Capability), Merriam-Webster (Ability, Capability), (Ability, Capability)


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