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Default Parameter in Java

In Java, default parameters are a powerful feature that allows developers to define default values for method parameters. This can be useful when a method has a large number of parameters, and some of them are not always required.

Default parameters were introduced in Java 8 and are a part of the Java language specification. They work by allowing a developer to define a default value for a parameter when it is not explicitly passed in during a method call.

To define a default parameter, simply assign a value to the parameter when it is declared in the method signature. For example, consider the following method:

If we wanted to make the city parameter optional, we could define a default value like this:

Now, when the method is called without a city parameter, the default value of "New York" will be used instead.

Benefits of Default Parameters

  • Default parameters can be particularly useful when dealing with APIs or libraries where you may not have control over the method signature. Instead of requiring users of your API to provide values for every parameter, you can define sensible defaults and allow users to override them when necessary.
  • Default parameters is that they can make code more concise and readable. By removing the need to specify default values explicitly in every method call, you can reduce the amount of boilerplate code and make your code easier to understand.
  • It is worth noting that default parameters can only be used for parameters that come after all the required parameters in the method signature. This is because Java requires that all required parameters be specified before any optional parameters.

Default parameters were added to Java in version 8, which was released in 2014. Prior to Java 8, there was no way to specify default values for method parameters in Java. Instead, developers had to write overloaded methods or use null values to represent optional parameters. With the introduction of default parameters, Java developers gained a new tool for simplifying method signatures and making code more readable. They also became more consistent with other programming languages like Python, Ruby, and JavaScript, which have had default parameters for years.

In Java, default parameters work by allowing a developer to specify a default value for a parameter in the method declaration. The default value is used if the method is called without an argument for that parameter.

Here's an example program that demonstrates the use of default parameters in Java:


Enter your first name: John
Enter your last name: Doe
Hello, Dr. John Doe!
Hello, Mr. John Doe!

In this example, we define a method called printName that takes in three parameters: firstName, lastName, and title. The title parameter is given a default value of "Mr." if it is not provided.

In the main method, we get user input for the firstName and lastName variables, and then call the printName method twice. The first call passes in a value of "Dr." for the title parameter, while the second call does not pass in a value for title.


Default parameters are a powerful feature of Java that can help make your code more concise, readable, and flexible. They allow you to define sensible defaults for method parameters and make your code easier to use and understand. If you haven't already, consider using default parameters in your Java code to take advantage of this useful feature.

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