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What Are the Different Types of Phone Chargers?

There are various types of cell phone chargers.
A smartphone with a touch screen.
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  • Written By: Jessica Ellis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 14 July 2014
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A phone charger is an important accessory for any battery-charged phone. Chargers are most frequently used with cellular phones, which tend to have a relatively short battery life. With the enormous popularity of battery operated phones, phone chargers have been developed to match nearly any type of situation. It is not unusual for a person to possess more than one type of charger, to ensure that battery life can be extended regardless of location.

Probably the most common type of phone charger is called a wall charger. This is a simple device that plugs into an electrical outlet on one end and the phone on the other. Wall chargers come standard with most cellular phones, and are usually the simplest choice for charging a phone at home. Wall chargers are not usually universal, however; most phones cannot be charged by a wall charger from another company or even an older or newer phone from the same brand.

Some people use a computer charger at work or home. This type of phone charger may use a USB connector that allows the phone to charge while the computer is on. This may be a good choice for people that need to charge their phones in a place with limited outlet space, such as an office with multiple computers. Computer phone chargers can also sometimes be used with laptops, making them a good option for people that work with portable computers on a daily basis.

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A car charger is a useful form of phone charger that can be used in nearly any type of car. These use a specialized plug that hooks into a vehicle cigarette lighter, which is a standard feature in most cars. This can allow a car to be charged while on the move, which makes it a great option for travelers. A car charger can be an excellent back-up should a wall charger fail or be forgotten at home.

A rapid or fast charger can provide a dying battery with a quick jolt of revitalizing power, but may come with a risk. These chargers, which are somewhat rare for standard phone use, can charge must faster than a standard wall or travel charger. Though many incorporate a small fan for cooling purposes, poorly made fast phone chargers can damage the battery if left plugged in for too long. Overuse can reduce the life of the battery and make it less able to charge to full power.

Some unusual phone chargers are available on the market for those who enjoy gadgetry or are looking to reduce energy use. Solar phone chargers use small solar panels to capture the energy in sunlight and use it to restore the battery. These can be a very good choice for people on camping or hiking trips who will be away from standard power sources. A similar alternative is a hand-cranked charger, which uses manual power to provide a charge. These phone chargers may take serious arm work to provide a decent amount of charge, but have the benefit of not needing sunlight to charge in remote locations.

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