Method Overloading vs Method Overriding


What is method overloading in Java

Method overloading in Java is a programming concept when programmer declares two methods of the same name but with different method signature, e.g. change in the argument list or change in the type of argument. method overloading is a powerful Java programming technique to declare a method which does a similar performance but with a different kind of input. One of the most popular examples of method overloading is System.out.println() method which is overloaded to accept all kinds of data types in Java. You have println() method which takes String, int, float,double or even char in output. All of those methods are collectively referred as an overloaded method in Java. 

Properties of method overloading in Java

1) Overloaded methods are bonded using static binding in Java. Which occurs during compile time i.e. when you compile Java program. During the compilation process, compiler bind method calls to the actual method.

2) Overloaded methods are fast because they are bonded during compile time and no check or binding is required during runtime.

3) Most important rule of method overloading in Java is that two overloaded methods must have a different signature.Here is an example of What does method signature means in Java:

1) A number of argument to a method is part of method signature.
2) Type of argument to a method is also part of method signature
3) Order of argument also forms part of method signature provided they are of different type.
4) The return type of method is not part of the method signature in Java.

Method Overloading Example in Java

Here is a list of method and there corresponding overloaded method with reason that How they are overloaded :

Original method :
 public void  show(String message){
Overloaded method : number of argument is different
 public void  show(String message, boolean show){
Overloaded method : type of argument is different
 public void  show(Integer message){
Not a Overloaded method : only return type is different
 public boolean show(String message){
      return false;

overloading means multiple methods with the same name but with a different signature. remember return type is not part of method signature. method overloading is also completely different to method overriding.

Method Overriding

Overriding means having two methods with the same method name and parameters (i.e., method signature). One of the methods is in the parent class and the other is in the child class. Overriding allows a child class to provide a specific implementation of a method that is already provided its parent class.


Example of Overriding

Here is an example of overriding. After reading the code, guess the output.

class Dog{
    public void bark(){
        System.out.println("woof ");
class Hound extends Dog{
    public void sniff(){
        System.out.println("sniff ");
    public void bark(){
public class OverridingTest{
    public static void main(String [] args){
        Dog dog = new Hound();



In the example above, the dog variable is declared to be a Dog. During compile time, the compiler checks if the Dog class has the bark() method. As long as the Dog class has the bark() method, the code compilers. At run-time, a Hound is created and assigned to dog. The JVM knows that dog is referring to the object of Hound, so it calls the bark() method of Hound. This is called Dynamic Polymorphism.

Overriding vs. Overloading

Here are some important facts about Overriding and Overloading:

1). The real object type in the run-time, not the reference variable’s type, determines which overridden method is used at runtime. In contrast, reference type determines which overloaded method will be used at compile time.
2). Polymorphism applies to overriding, not to overloading.
3). Overriding is a run-time concept while overloading is a compile-time concept.

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