If your phone has a USB port, you can purchase a USB cable and connect it to your computer. Not all USB connectors are the same, so make sure that you buy a cable with connectors that will fit into the ports on both your phone and your computer. If you're not sure which kind of connector to buy, take your phone to a store and find the one that fits instead of buying one online. You will probably also need software from the phone manufacturer to download photos via USB. This may come with the phone, or you may have to purchase or download it separately.
Some phones can transfer photos to a computer wirelessly, via Bluetooth or infrared, and in the future, we can expect to see phones that support 802.11b and 802.11g Wi-Fi standards. Unfortunately, many phones that are equipped with Bluetooth cannot transfer photos with that technology because the function has been blocked. In addition, if you're using a Mac, the software that facilitates wireless photo transfer may not be available to you.
One of the most straightforward and economical options may be to buy a phone that stores photos on a memory card. Just make sure that the ability to download from your phone's card hasn't been blocked on the model you're buying--yes, some companies do that, too. Assuming you have full functionality, you can simply remove the card and transfer photos to your computer with a USB card reader. Most phones with removable memory use formats that are miniaturized versions of the larger cards used in cameras, so you'll probably need an adapter to put your phone media in a standard card reader. It's likely to come with the card, but you can purchase one separately if it doesn't. There are also dedicated mobile media format readers, such as SanDisk's MobileMate
. Just make sure that the format of the card reader matches the format of the card or the card adapter that you're using.