From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishwhat if ...?what if ...?a)IFused to ask what you should do or what the result will be if something happens, especially something unpleasant 🔊 What if this plan of yours fails, what then? 🔊 ‘What if it rains tomorrow?’ ‘We’ll just have to postpone it.’b)SUGGESTused to make a suggestion 🔊 What if we moved the sofa over here? Would that look better? →what
Examples from the Corpus
what if ...?• What if your plan doesn't work?what-ifˈwhat-if noun [countable usually plural] informal 🔊 🔊 something that could happen in the future or could have happened in the past 🔊 If I thought about all of the what-ifs in my life, I would go crazy.From Longman Business Dictionarywhat-ifˈwhat-if adjectivewhat-if? question/analysis etc a way of examining a situation by deciding what you would do if something happened to change itA risk management consultant can kick-start the process by providing a few, objective what-if? questions.