The derivative of x^3 is equal to 3x^2. The function x^{3} denotes the cube of x. In this post, we will find the derivative of x cube by different methods; for example, by the power rule, by the limit definition of derivatives.

## Derivative of x^{3} by Power Rule

To find the derivative of x cube, we will use the power rule of derivatives. The power rule is about the derivative of x^{n} and the rule is given below.

$\dfrac{d}{dx}$(x^{n})=nx^{n-1}.

Putting n=3 in the above rule, we will obtain the derivative of x^{3}. Hence, it follows that

$\dfrac{d}{dx}$(x^{3}) = 3x^{3-1} = 3x^{2}.

So the derivative of x^{3} by the power rule of derivatives is 3x^{2}.

**You can read:** Derivative of 1/root(x)

Derivative of root x + 1 by root x

Next, we will find out the derivative of x^{3} from first principle, that is, using the limit definition of derivatives.

## Derivative of x^{3} by First Principle

Recall the first principle of derivatives: The derivative of a function f(x) by first principle is given as follows.

$\dfrac{d}{dx}(f(x))$ $=\lim\limits_{h \to 0} \dfrac{f(x+h)-f(x)}{h}$

Let $f(x)=x^3$

So the derivative of x cube by the first principle is equal to

$\dfrac{d}{dx}(x^3)$ $=\lim\limits_{h \to 0} \dfrac{(x+h)^3-x^3}{h}$

$=\lim\limits_{h \to 0} \dfrac{x^3+3x^2h+3xh^2+h^3-x^3}{h}$ using the algebraic identity $(a+b)^3$ $ = a^3+3a^2b+3ab^2+b^3$.

$=\lim\limits_{h \to 0} \dfrac{3x^2h+3xh^2+h^3}{h}$

$=\lim\limits_{h \to 0} \dfrac{h(3x^2+3xh+h^2)}{h}$

$=\lim\limits_{h \to 0} [3x^2+3xh+h^2]$

$=3x^2+3x \cdot 0+0^2$

= 3x^{2}+0 = 3x^{2}.

Hence, the derivative of x^3 by first principle is 3x^{2}.

**Also Read:**

Derivative of x | Derivative of x^{2}

Derivative of 1/x^{2} | Derivative of 1/(1+x^{2})

**Question 1:** Find the derivative of $(\sin x)^3$

*Solution: *

Let z=sin x. So we have $\frac{dz}{dx}$ = cos x.

Then by the chain rule of derivatives, the derivative of sinx cube is equal to

$\dfrac{d}{dx}(\sin^3 x)$ $=\dfrac{d}{dx}(z^3)$ $=\dfrac{d}{dz}(z^3) \cdot \dfrac{dz}{dx}$

$=3z^2 \cdot \cos x$

$=3\sin^2 x \cos x$ as z=sin x.

Thus, the derivative of (sin x)^3 is equal to 3sin^{2}x cosx.

**More Reading:** Find the derivative of 2^{x}

## FAQs

**Q1: What is the derivative of x ^{3}?**

**Answer:** The derivative of x cube is equal to 3x^{2}.