Difference Between Pause and Stop

Pause vs Stop

Pause and stop are words in English language that refer to cessation of movement of an object. Stop is also used as a verb to indicate the end of something as when something ceases to exist. Pause is a brief stop or halt in movement or activity, but many people remain confused about pause and stop because of the similarities between the two concepts. However, there are also differences that will be talked about in this article.

What does Pause Mean?

If you have used a tape recorder or digital camera, you must have noticed the buttons of play, pause, and stop. These three buttons are used to start, stop for a while, and stop permanently respectively. If you are listening to music on a tape recorder and want to make a phone call, you have the feature of pause that enables you to stop the song momentarily to attend to the call and later listen to the song right from where you left listening. Thus, pause is a feature that allows one to have a break from an activity temporarily. If a bus is moving, but pauses to let a passenger get on board before moving again, it becomes clear that the pause was a brief stop intended to let the passenger get inside.

What does Stop Mean?

If you know about traffic lights, the red light is used to mean stop. This is why the backlights of all vehicles are red in color to alert vehicles coming from behind to apply breaks whenever they pause or become slow to avoid accidents. If it rained heavily in an area for a long period but then stopped, it means the end of the activity of raining. However, stop is also used to indicate the closure of an opening as in plugging of a hole.

What is the difference between Pause and Stop?

One can find people searching for the difference between pause and stop in relation to the activity of download from torrent clients. If you are downloading a file, you have the option to either pause this process for a while or stop it altogether if you are facing difficulty in opening other websites because of downloading. Though to an outsider, both functions release download speed to allow opening of websites, but there is a subtle difference between these two functions as one loses all peers that he has managed to get when downloading from a torrent when he chooses the option of stop. On the other hand, pause allows him to have the luxury of starting with all these peers when he starts download again. 

If you are listening to an orator, you can feel the difference between pause and stop as he makes use of pauses to give a deeper meaning to his words and to let the audiences soak in his words. He stops only when he is finished though there are leaders who speak with such long pauses that they look like stops to audiences.


Pause vs Stop

Pause is a brief lull in an activity whereas stop indicates cessation for a long time. A person travelling for some time on foot might pause for a brief period to take some rest but stops only when he reaches his destination. One uses the feature of pause when listening to music on a tape recorder or when recording an event with his digital camera. He can start again from where he left using this feature. Stop indicates end of the activity for a long period. While watching a movie on a DVD, one can pause for a while to do some urgent work and restart to enjoy it later.


Further Reading:

  1. Difference Between Pause and Silence