1. jerethi's Avatar
    Does any micro-usb charger work on a smartphone with a micro usb port, or should you try to use the one that originally came with your phone? I've noticed that they do have slight differences on the margins - the amperage and voltage, for example, seem to vary slightly from charger to charger. Does it really matter?

    I have been told at times that you should try to use the charger that came with your phone - otherwise, you run the risk of damaging hardware or the battery. But I'm dubious.

    So, I put it to all the Android Central forum-ers!
    08-16-2012 12:52 AM
  2. Mooncatt's Avatar
    In terms of warranty issues, they can decline a claim if they found out you used a non-OEM charger and it damaged the phone. That's about the only reason they say that. In my experience, aftermarket chargers are just fine as long as they meet the requirements of the phone's original OEM charger. I think all of them should be rated for 5.1V output, so just make sure the mA rating is at least the same as the phone's stock charger. If it's less, you'll burn out the charger, and risk damaging the phone. I've had that happen, and thankfully it didn't harm my phone. You may also want to think about getting a charger with a higher mA output rating than your OEM charger. The phone will only draw as much power as it needs, so it's not like the charger will overpower the phone. It will let it stay cooler though (I've seem some OEM chargers get pretty warm). Think of it like a kid and an adult. The kid could be running full tilt and hold a steady speed, but will tire quickly. The adult could go the same speed at just a fast walk, thus not working as hard and able to go longer without breaking a sweat. Electronics are the same way in that respect.

    Also, you get what you pay for. Try sticking with name brand stuff. If you try to go cheap, you risk getting inferior parts. And the really cheap ones wont easily say what their power ratings are and you could get one that's too weak without even realizing it. I've seen two side by side on the shelf once. They looked exactly identical, only one was about $2 more than the other. At first I thought they were the same, just some put in the wrong place. I double checked the UPC and the numbers were different, which told me they were actually two seperate items. I was able to look at the small sticker on the charger itself and turns out one was rated at 750mA (too little for my phone) and one was rated for 2.1 A. If I wasn't a careful shopper, that could have been more than easily missed and go the wrong one because I wanted to save a couple bucks.
  3. Mooncatt's Avatar
    In terms of warranty issues, they can decline a claim if they found out you used a non-OEM charger and it damaged the phone. That's about the only reason they say that. In my experience, aftermarket chargers are just fine as long as they meet the requirements of the phone's original OEM charger. I think all of them should be rated for 5.1V output, so just make sure the mA rating is at least the same as the phone's stock charger. If it's less, you'll burn out the charger, and risk damaging the phone. I've had that happen, and thankfully it didn't harm my phone. You may also want to think about getting a charger with a higher mA output rating than your OEM charger. The phone will only draw as much power as it needs, so it's not like the charger will overpower the phone. It will let it stay cooler though (I've seem some OEM chargers get pretty warm). Think of it like a kid and an adult. The kid could be running full tilt and hold a steady speed, but will tire quickly. The adult could go the same speed at just a fast walk, thus not working as hard and able to go longer without breaking a sweat. Electronics are the same way in that respect.

    Also, you get what you pay for. Try sticking with name brand stuff. If you try to go cheap, you risk getting inferior parts. And the really cheap ones wont easily say what their power ratings are and you could get one that's too weak without even realizing it. I've seen two side by side on the shelf once. They looked exactly identical, only one was about $2 more than the other. At first I thought they were the same, just some put in the wrong place. I double checked the UPC and the numbers were different, which told me they were actually two seperate items. I was able to look at the small sticker on the charger itself and turns out one was rated at 750mA (too little for my phone) and one was rated for 2.1 A. If I wasn't a careful shopper, that could have been more than easily missed and go the wrong one because I wanted to save a couple bucks.
    xxxFathead07xxx and Amir like this.
    08-16-2012 02:44 AM
  4. sirheck's Avatar
    You should be able to with no problems.

    Unless you go to my local ATT store looking for an OTG cable.
    They told me they have Micro-USB to USB cables for data transfer
    to computers but they would not charge. Or vice-versa, can't
    remember which.

    I have to laugh.
    08-16-2012 02:51 AM
  5. Devinator's Avatar
    In terms of warranty issues, they can decline a claim if they found out you used a non-OEM charger and it damaged the phone. That's about the only reason they say that. In my experience, aftermarket chargers are just fine as long as they meet the requirements of the phone's original OEM charger.
    This.

    I would think if you did it occasionally, I wouldn't sweat it, but, I wouldn't make a habit of using random chargers. If you are looking for cheap OEM chargers, try looking on Amazon. I got a bunch of extra OEM chargers on there for dirt cheap for my X2.
    08-16-2012 07:44 AM
  6. Puzzlegal's Avatar
    You should be able to with no problems.

    Unless you go to my local ATT store looking for an OTG cable.
    They told me they have Micro-USB to USB cables for data transfer
    to computers but they would not charge. Or vice-versa, can't
    remember which.

    I have to laugh.
    There are some cheap cables that will charge but but carry data. They are usually labelled.
    08-16-2012 07:57 AM
  7. jerethi's Avatar
    Thanks so much for the replies, everyone! Very helpful!

    In terms of which charger to use, when I wrote the post, I was thinking of using the OEM charger that came with my fianc's Droid Bionic to charge my GS3. I think the amperage on that charger may be just a tad less than mine, so, based on what I've seen here, may not be safe to use - I'll have to double check though.

    Thanks again everyone!

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Android Central Forums
    08-16-2012 10:58 AM
  8. Cellmeister's Avatar
    Thanks so much for the replies, everyone! Very helpful!

    In terms of which charger to use, when I wrote the post, I was thinking of using the OEM charger that came with my fianc's Droid Bionic to charge my GS3. I think the amperage on that charger may be just a tad less than mine, so, based on what I've seen here, may not be safe to use - I'll have to double check though.

    Thanks again everyone!

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Android Central Forums

    Some FYI's:

    A few hundred (200 - 300) mAh charging either way is safe & fine to use

    Voltage outputs are usually within 5 to 15% area in general

    - Lower mAh = slower charging, less heat, longer battery life & better for lithium batts

    - Higher mAh = faster charging, more heat, will shorten battery life

    Any OEM charger is safer to use due to better quality IC chips versus after market brand batteries & chargers

    Many OEM cell phone chargers are 4 to 5 volt output for batteries (3.6 -4.1 volt) and have increased there mAh output to around 800 mAh

    Cables: The Mini & Micro USB cables come in Power & Data or Power only types.

    Generally cell phone battery life expectancy on average usually are good for 8 months to 24 months depending on many factors, ie temp, amount of charge, type of charge, top offs, battery completely drained, signal strength, etc.

    I tend to slow charge my cell phone batts with a 200 to 500 mAh via USB powered hub for batteries ranging from 1000 to 1600 mAh capacity, unless I am in a hurry I will use the stock OEM 800 mAh charger which warms the battery up.

    It's better to top off lithium cell phone batteries

    Don't overdrain your cell phone lithium batteries you will shorten there life

    This is from my training, experience & knowledge.

    Hope this helps
    08-17-2012 02:39 PM
  9. Mooncatt's Avatar
    @Cellmiester

    I would disagree with some points in your post. What you're talking about sounds like you're thinking of charging a battery with the phone off, or the battery removed in a charging cradle. Most people don't do that, and have the phone on, possibly even using them while on a charger. So while a slow charge may be preferable on a battery alone, it's not good with the phone on.

    Going under the stock requirement will shorten charger life from being overworked and running hot (that's from MY experience) and potentially not deliver enough power to the phone. If the output capacity is too low, your battery will drain even when plugged in. A higher rated charger does not mean it forces more juice to the phone. The phone determines how much power to draw. Also, you can't change how much of that power is split between running phone and charging battery. The phone will charge the battery as it was designed. I've never had a battery get hot while being charged with the phone plugged in.
    08-17-2012 03:02 PM
  10. Rukbat's Avatar
    Charging a LiIon battery with the OEM charger does not shorten the battery life, as opposed to charging it on USB or with a lower powered charger. (Either that or I missed the "greater than 8 years of use" part of the label on a few of my batteries - that have lasted so long that it's almost ridiculous to use the phones they power. A few of them have had most of their charging done on a 5 volt shop supply that can provide many amps of charging current.)

    A good charger rated for less current (ma) than the OEM charger will work fine, because a good charger (whether it's OEM or aftermarket) is current-limited. It'll just take longer to charge the battery.

    Some phones are wired so that they need specific connections inside the plug that goes into the phone. If you use a generic cable (or a generic charger with an attached cable), and those connections aren't there, the phone won't charge. Nothing bad will happen, it'll just be as if you hadn't connected the phone to the charger.

    "A few hundred (200 - 300) mAh charging either way is safe & fine to use" Huh? Anything from about 2 mA to millions of amps is fine. (You plug your "needs about 150 mA" charger into a 100,000 mA outlet [that's a standard one side of a 200 Amp service home electrical system] and it has no problem, does it?) A charger that supplies 5 volts at 1 or 2 mA probably won't charge the battery, because the charging circuit takes more current than that. But a charger that supplies 100 mA will definitely work (that's all a USB connection can supply), and there's no upper limit. The phone won't draw more current than it's designed to.

    "Many OEM cell phone chargers are 4 to 5 volt output for batteries (3.6 -4.1 volt) and have increased there [sic] mAh output to around 800 mAh" Repeat after me - "Android". 5 volt charging circuits. Available current determines only the length of time it takes to charge the battery.

    "It's better to top off lithium cell phone batteries" It's better to charge them fully, then discharge them fully for 3 cycles (it's called conditioning). Then charge as needed, and as available. (Nothing wrong with giving a fully discharged battery a 10% charge, running out for a few hours, then letting it fully charge overnight after you get home.)

    It's better to not top them off if you're going to store them for more than a couple of weeks.

    "Don't overdrain your cell phone lithium batteries" If it's a good battery you can't. Well-designed LiIon batteries disconnect from their terminals before you can "overdrain" them, since charging a fully drained LiIon battery is dangerous (as in burning down your house).

    This is from my many years in both the battery (as in designing them) and cellphone (as in selling them) businesses.
    duner53 likes this.
    08-19-2012 06:02 PM
  11. jean15paul's Avatar
    It's better to charge them fully, then discharge them fully for 3 cycles (it's called conditioning). Then charge as needed, and as available.
    @Rukbat, Question: what happens if you don't condition a battery? Will it not hold a charge as well? And/or will it shorten it's overall years of life? Is it ok to use the phone during the full charge conditioning cycles? Is it ok to unplug it briefly during full charge conditioning cycles, or does it have to be 100% full uninterrupted charge. (For example, I'm in the processing of fully charging at work, but unplug for 5 minutes to get to car charger when it's time to go? And then unplug for a minute when I get home?)

    I find it very difficult to charge and discharge fully on a regular schedule, because my phone will die at weird times when I'm out and about.
    08-20-2012 11:23 AM
  12. RedRocker2's Avatar
    About buying more amp capacity. More may not be better.

    I have 'mini' usb chargers that output 500-550 ma.

    I bought a wall charger (wart- plugs into wall, with std USB outlet. It came with a cable StdUSB -to- "micro" cable, which I didn't need. So I plugged a USB to mini cable in. None of my 'mini' devices would charge. Checked the output of the wart- Same 5V, but 850 ma.

    Suspected the '850' was faulty, till I plugged it into my mom's haven phone (with a 'micro' outlet) Charges it fine with the '850'

    Short version- At least in this case, more milliamps is not better.

    just my observation
    10-18-2013 02:57 AM
  13. BOB BOBSON3's Avatar
    What happens to the "excess" power. The voltage from a wall socket is constant so surely the excess energy would become heat (due to resistance) and so a charger that provides too much power could be damaged from the heat. Am I missing something about amps here?
    08-23-2014 11:38 AM
  14. Mooncatt's Avatar
    It's the phone that determines how much current to pull (mA, or full amps on newer phones). You could have a charger rated for 10A, but it's not going to force feed that into a phone that only wants 1A. I don't know enough about the electrical properties to fly explain it, but it would be the same principles as anything plugged into a wall outlet. Those are rated 15A or more, but most devices only need a few. Tv's, computers, coffee makers, etc.
    08-23-2014 04:29 PM
  15. raptir's Avatar
    What happens to the "excess" power. The voltage from a wall socket is constant so surely the excess energy would become heat (due to resistance) and so a charger that provides too much power could be damaged from the heat. Am I missing something about amps here?
    Yes, and what you're missing is that the current (amps) from a wall outlet isn't constant. A device like a smartphone charger is not going to draw nearly as much current from a wall outlet as something like a refrigerator or an electric stove.
    08-25-2014 12:43 PM

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