Did I actually say smartphone gloves?
Smartphones have become extremely popular. This has produced a wide variety of accessories. Since winter means cold weather (at least in the Northern Hemisphere) special gloves have been developed for smartphone use in cold weather. Ordinary gloves will not work with smartphone touchscreens, because of the way the screen is designed to work. Most smartphone touch screens use a “capacitive touchscreen”. Essentially, this means that in order to work with a touchscreen, a glove needs to complete a circuit with your finger. There are special gloves that will work, many priced in the $20 – $40 range. A pair of regular gloves can be converted for smartphone use by putting a few stitches of conductive thread in the fingertips of the glove. This special thread will complete the connection between the screen and your finger. There are many different smartphone accessories. Generally, the internet is the best place to shop for them, since the cost will often be less that the cost in a physical store — particularly in the smartphone provider’s store. Smartphone necklace has some more about this.
Chargers and cables – A charger and cable is generally included with the device, since nearly all smartphones are rechargeable. Having at least one spare set is a good idea because cables can get lost or damaged. A charger and cable designed to work in the 12-volt outlet of a car is very handy for use on the road. This is especially advisable when using a smartphone GPS mapping app because those apps use a lot of battery power. Some smartphones use a USB plug charging cable which allows the device to be charged from a computer, and for synchronizing data or downloading apps.
Cases – A case is highly recommended for protecting your smartphone. They come in many materials and in varying degrees of device protection. Some cases are in the form of a holster than can be worn on a belt. There are also cases which attach to the user’s arm when exercising so it isn’t necessary to hold the device.
Headsets – A set of ear-buds or earphones is usually supplied with a smartphone for listening to audio played back on the device. Wireless headsets which eliminate the cable connection can also be used with many smartphones. A smartphone can be used as a hands-free phone when making or receiving calls by using a wireless headset which includes a microphone.
Screen protectors – Screen protectors are made of a clear plastic material which is attached directly to the touchscreen with a special (usually water-based) adhesive. This can help protect the surface of the smartphone touchscreen. All screen protectors are designed so as not to interfere with the sensitivity of the device’s touchscreen, and some screen protectors are designed to reduce glare. Be careful when installing the screen protector — the touchscreen surface must be completely clean before applying the screen protector.
Stylus – A stylus is very useful for those times when more precise control over the touchscreen is required, than can be obtained with a fingertip. These items can be quite inexpensive, and are useful. Some stylus models include a pen or pencil.
Car kits and mounts – These are useful for attaching your device to the dashboard or window when using the device with a GPS application for following a route on a map when driving. Many devices will fit many different brands of smartphone, and can include speakerphones, charging capability and/or antenna connections. However, be careful not to let viewing the map distract you!
Batteries – Generally, the battery that comes with a smartphone is rechargeable. If you remember to recharge your device when the battery is low, you shouldn’t need a spare. However, spare batteries for smartphones with replaceable batteries are available in the $20 – $50 range, with some higher. Special cases incorporating a back-up battery are available for some devices – the iPhone for example – which do not have a user-replaceable battery. There is multitude of smartphone accessories available from many manufacturers. When you do select an accessory, just be sure it is designed to work with your smartphone.