Cellphone or Cell phone? (Helpful Examples)

“Cell phones” are becoming increasingly popular in today’s world. Technology is important, but so is grammar. We’ll explore whether “cell phone” is correct as one or two words, with all the information you need to understand why.

Cellphone vs. Cell phone

“Cell phone” is the most popular choice and the original way to spell the word. However, “cellphone” as a one-word spelling has also started to appear as a variation. They are both correct, and it depends entirely on personal preference which one you prefer.

Cellphone or Cell phone?

According to Google Ngram Viewer, “cell phone” is by far the most popular choice. This shows that it’s generally more appropriate to write the words as two separate ones rather than grouped as one.

Cellphone or Cell phone - Statistics

We can also see that the popularity of both words kicked off in the 1990s (the invention of the cell phone). This shows that both forms have always been used, but the two-word variation has been the most popular.

The Cambridge Dictionary and The Oxford Dictionary both define “cell phone” as two words. They do this because “cell” is a shortened form of “cellular.” We must keep the words separated in this case.

“Cellphone” is also provided as an alternative spelling, as is the even simpler form of “cell.” This shows that it’s common for people to want to look for easier options in their writing.

Is “Cellphone” One Word?

“Cellphone” can be grouped into one word. There are no grammatical rules that tell us this isn’t possible. In fact, we can refer to AP Style guidelines to help us understand when we should (and shouldn’t) shorten words in this particular manner.

According to the AP Stylebook, “cell phone” is allowed to be shortened to one word. We can do this because it’s commonly written together, and there is still a clear distinction between the sounds of “cell” and “phone” when they are written down.

It’s common for languages to evolve over time, and shortening words like “cellphone” into one word is a common way for certain language evolutions to take place.

Many people will always look for simpler spelling variations whenever they can find them. This is what “cellphone” demonstrates.

These examples should give you a clearer picture of what we mean:

  1. Did you fancy going to the store to get a new cellphone with me? I’ve wanted one for a while.
  2. It’s not the best cellphone, but it’s the one that I’ve got. It gets me through my normal days!
  3. You should get a cellphone with a better signal. I think it will help you communicate with us better.
  4. It’s his cellphone! You should give one of the numbers a ring to make sure they know you’ve found it.

Is “Cell phone” Two Words?

“Cell phone” is also correct as two words. Generally, it’s more common to see it written as two words today. “Cellular” is the long-form of “cell,” which is what we use to modify the word “phone” when they are split into two words.

“Cell” can be treated as an adjective, meaning it modifies the noun “phone.” That’s why it’s more common for people to use them as separate words.

However, it shouldn’t be long before the one-word variation overtakes the two-word option.

These examples will show you the two-word variation in action:

  1. I thought you’d like a new cell phone for your birthday, so I managed to get you one for free!
  2. It’s not the cell phone you asked for, but it’s definitely going to be the one you’ll have to stick with for now!
  3. Did you want a new cell phone or not? I’m more than happy to get one for you!
  4. I’ve lost my cell phone! I don’t remember where I last put it, and now I’m going crazy!

Tip To Remember The Difference

We typically end with a quick tip to help you remember the difference. However, it’s clear that both forms of “cell phone” are correct, so we don’t need to remember the difference.

As English evolves, it’s common for two words to be grouped into one if the words still offer a suitable enough distinction. Since “cell phones” are so common, it makes sense that we are slowly simplifying them into one word as we use them more!