I have checked this site.

  • We use this or that to refer to something with special emphasis – indicating an interesting new fact has been mentioned.
  • We use this or that to refer to a new topic, often the last thing mentioned. The reference could be a word, phrase or clause.

Are the uses of "this" and "that" below both grammatical? I think "that" also can be used in the sentences. I'd value your opinions.

Could any native speaker please answer this?

  1. Apple is going to release a new operating system. This/that will be a huge step in merging the laptop OS with the iPad and iPhone OS. 

  2. AppleCar wants to market its auto in the United States first. This/that will allow the product to be tested before introducing it to the international market.

  3. Heavy rains and stormy conditions throughout the summer have led to severe shortages in strawberries and other soft fruits. This/that has led to price rises in many supermarkets and shops

  • It's simple: "this" is here and "that" is over there.
    – Hot Licks
    Dec 12, 2017 at 13:24
  • So, are you saying both are correct?
    – user266865
    Dec 12, 2017 at 13:26
  • 3
    In all your examples it would be idiomatic to use 'this', referring to the fact that you have just stated. Dec 12, 2017 at 13:57
  • @KateBunting Thank you. But is the use of that ungrammatical? I have checked this site dictionary.cambridge.org/grammar/british-grammar/writing/… which says "We use 'that' in a similar way to "this'. However, when we use that, we distance ourselves more from the topic or from aspects of the topic".
    – user266865
    Dec 12, 2017 at 14:10
  • 1
    "We use 'that' in a similar way to "this'. However, when we use that, we distance ourselves more from the topic or from aspects of the topic". That is exactly right. Only sometimes the distances are figurative vs literal. And it's up to the speaker to decide what's "close" and what's "far away".
    – Hot Licks
    Dec 12, 2017 at 20:03

2 Answers 2


'This' has the sense of 'happening now'; 'that' has the sense of 'the effect once it is already completed' - along the lines of what others have said about 'distance'.

'That' is more impersonal and abstract, 'this' has more involvement and is livelier.

Hope this helps! (Direct wish for now) Hope that helped! (More abstract impersonal wish thst doesn't really need an answer)



"It" is the neutral personal pronoun. "This" and "That" are demonstrative pronouns or adjectives. "This" is related to the first person (the speaker). "That" is related to the second or third person (you or he, others). "It" can never be an adjective.

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