It was very disturbing to learn that Google will not open source Android 3.0 in timely fashion.

What is the meaning of in timely fashion?

  • 1
    Another interesting thing about this quote: I didn't know "open source" could be a verb.
    – Marthaª
    Mar 30, 2011 at 20:04

3 Answers 3


The phrase in timely fashion means quickly, promptly, within a reasonable time frame. One might also hear in a timely manner, which has the same meaning.

For further reference, here are the relevant definitions of timely and fashion according to NOAD:

timely done or occurring at a favorable or useful time; opportune

fashion a manner of doing something


Basically, it means "quickly enough" or "on time".

timely: 1. coming early or at the right time; 2: appropriate or adapted to the times or the occasion

fashion: 2b. mode of action or operation

Note that I usually hear/see this phrase with an article:

You need to pay your bills in a timely fashion if you want your credit score to improve.

Omitting the article makes it sound a little awkward, but not necessarily incorrect.

  • Actually, I think the article makes it rather awkward. For me, it's either in timely fashion or in a timely manner.
    – Jimi Oke
    Mar 30, 2011 at 14:40
  • Just for what it may be worth, in legal paperwork it's fairly common to see phrases like "timely filed" instead of "filed in a timely manner." I found it a bit jarring at first, but "timely" is constructed as an adverb, not an adjective. Mar 30, 2011 at 19:18
  • @Jerry Coffin: Yes, I've seen that too, and it still jars for me - I understand the need to reduce "in a timely fashion" given how often it crops up in legal contexts, but personally I'd prefer "on time"! @Martha: +1 for it sounding better with an article.
    – psmears
    Mar 30, 2011 at 19:44
  • 2
    According to Google, "in a timely fashion" is 8x more common than "in timely fashion" - and to me it sounds strange without the article. Oct 6, 2011 at 19:43
  • Lawyers sometimes use timeously for this, to reduce the number of words. (That few people understand it is another advantage.) Dec 6, 2011 at 14:31

It means “as quickly as is reasonable in a particular situation”.

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