What is the difference between “text” and new String(“text”)?

new String("text");
explicitly creates a new and referentially distinct instance of a String object; String s = "text"; may reuse an instance from the string constant pool if one is available.

You very rarely would ever want to use the new String(anotherString) constructor. From the API:

String(String original) : Initializes a newly created String object so that it represents the same sequence of characters as the argument; in other words, the newly created string is a copy of the argument string. Unless an explicit copy of original is needed, use of this constructor is unnecessary since strings are immutable.

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What referential distinction means

Examine the following snippet:

    String s1 = "foobar";
    String s2 = "foobar";

    System.out.println(s1 == s2);      // true

    s2 = new String("foobar");
    System.out.println(s1 == s2);      // false
    System.out.println(s1.equals(s2)); // true

== on two reference types is a reference identity comparison. Two objects that are equals are not necessarily ==. It is usually wrong to use == on reference types; most of the time equals need to be used instead.

Nonetheless, if for whatever reason you need to create two equals but not == string, you can use the new String(anotherString) constructor. It needs to be said again, however, that this is very peculiar, and is rarely the intention.


  • JLS 15.21.3 Reference Equality Operators == and !=
  • class Objectboolean Object(equals)

Related issues

  • Java String.equals versus ==
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