There’s no reason your traffic-laden commute to work can’t double as the perfect time to charge your Apple device. Although there are plenty of iPhone car chargers on the market, only a select few deserve your attention (and hard-earned money). Some may bask in a lightweight design and dual-port offerings, others an ultra compact and stylish approach, but nearly all of them provide a quick solution for charging your smartphone via the 12-volt socket — aka the circular cigarette lighter — housed within your vehicle’s dashboard or main interface.
Here are our top picks for the best iPhone car chargers, whether using the iPhone 4, 4S, 5, or 5S. Moreover, check out our choices for the best iPhone 4 and 4S cases if you’re in need of a little protection, or our comprehensive roundup of the best iPhone apps available on the App Store.
The best iPhone 4 and 4S car chargers
Skiva PowerFlow ($10)
The Skiva’s PowerFlow is, as the name implies, a supremely fast charging option for the iPhone. Its unique charging circuit prevents the phone from overcharging, a critical component in retaining the longevity of your smartphone battery, while boasting robust compatibility with a range of Apple devices including all iPad and iPhone models aside from the iPhone 5 and 5C. Moreover, both the speakers and headphone jack remain functional during charging, while producing little in the way of errant noise during simultaneous playback and charging sessions.
Griffin PowerDuo Charger ($10)
The Griffin PowerDuo Charger is the Swiss Army Knife of its respective field. The device is equipped with both a home charging unit, the PowerBlock, and a like-minded car charger, the PowerJolt. At just 1 AMP, its coupled charging speed is slower than the aforementioned Skiva PowerFlow, but the dual-port functionality give it the upper hand when traveling. The device is compatible with the iPhone 4 and 4S, along with prior iPhone models and iPods sporting full-sized dock connectors. Furthermore, the device protects your iPhone from overcharging and includes a charge cable compatible with both the PowerBlock and PowerJolt.
Belkin Car Micro Charger ($20)
Those looking for sleek and small will find little to fuss over with Belkin’s Car Micro Charger. It’s the most compact car charger on our roundup, small enough to conveniently fit into your glove box as well as your jean pocket. Packaged with a standard 3-foot ChargeSync cable, the Car Micro Charger has everything you need to start charging right out of the package. Its simplistic style is perfect for those looking for an option short on bells and whistles, yet powerful enough keep their device up and running at all times.
Griffin is a powerhouse when it comes to third-party accessories, and as such, it’s not surprising the company makes another appearance with its PowerDuo Reserve. While it boasts many of the same hallmarks as the PowerDuo, there is one characteristic that sets the two chargers apart. Not only do you receive both a wall and car charger with the PowerDuo Reserve, but also a detachable battery pack that plugs directly in to the bottom of the iPhone. The detachable battery charges while plugged in to either the wall, or your car, and even plugs in to your iPhone’s charging dock. It’s a tad bulky, but it does add significant battery life to your smartphone whenever you need it. However, keep in mind the PowerDuo Reserves doesn’t include a charge cable like other packages on our list.
iLuv DualPin ($20)
The iLuv DualPin car charger is yet another unique charging option, one showcasing two USB charge ports opposed to just one. The device’s pivoting head allows it to fit in more obscure charge port location, while maintaining easy access for your iPhone and charge cable. Equipped with 15.5 watts and 3.1 AMPs, it charges remarkably quick, yet it too lacks a bundled charge cable like other options on our list.
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