Cell phone chargers may not be glamorous, but indeed, they can be indispensible when your phone loses power and you're on the go. And though a wide variety of such products exist, from the solar powered to the muscle powered, we prefer to get our emergency juice from more reliable sources. Like the Energizer Energi To Go that we reviewed last year, the Turbo Charge Tc2 portable cell phone charger from Voxred International runs on two AA batteries while sporting a simple, foolproof design. It delivers quick power to your phone and is more appealing than the Energi To Go or competing products from Tekkeon and the Planon. And unlike the emergency chargers from Cellboost, you can use the Turbo Charge multiple times. It's also reasonably priced at $24.95.
As we mentioned earlier, the Turbo Charge has a thoroughly uncomplicated design. Like the Energizer charger, it consists of just two parts: an oblong battery holder and a short power connector. The battery holder is compact (3.2x1.5x0.75 inches) and lightweight, so you can slip it into a carrying bag and forget it's there. Compared with the Energi To Go, the Turbo Charge has a sturdier construction, and the battery cover is easier to pry off. Also, we like the black, silver, and blue color scheme.
The Turbo Charge takes almost no setup time. You need only to snap in the batteries, choose your connector (more on that later), and you're all set. Unlike the Energi To Go, the Turbo Charge includes an on/off switch that allows you to kept the batteries in the charger without depleting them. It also offers a set of nifty battery indicator lights that show just how much power your batteries have left. Both features are big improvements over Energizer's product. And if you're ever lost in the dark, you can use the bright LEDs on the top of the unit as an emergency flashlight.
The TurboCharge comes with a set of eight power connectors that should fit most--but not all--cell phones on the market. The adapters include a mini-USB charger for Motorola handsets, both the large and small pin connectors for Nokia, and the older Moto adapter with two prongs. The remaining cords will accommodate a variety of Sony Ericsson, Palm Treo, RIM BlackBerry, Samsung, LG, Kyocera, and Sanyo models. While that's a decent selection, there are quite a few handsets that won't be compatible. Newer Sony Ericsson models such as the W580i are out, as are Moto handsets such as the Z6c that use a micro-USB connection, and the iPhone. We also couldn't find a connector for both the LG Venus VX8800 and the Samsung FlipShot SCH-U900 either. But considering how many different power connectors Samsung has made, the latter isn't surprising.