Power connectors or AC power plugs are devices that enable electronic devices to be connected to the primary power supply in the wall. Power connectors come in differing voltage and current ratings and they come in a variety of shapes, sizes and types of connectors. The type of power connector that is used is primarily based on the country the item is made for use in.
By definition the plug is a mobile connector that is attached to an electronic device. The socket by definition is a fixed structure in a wall that connects to the electrical system in a building. The plug has protruding prong, blades or pins that coordinate with the holes in a socket. Plugs are referred to as male and sockets are referred to as female.
In general, a power connector is referred to as a plug. It is also called a power plug, electric plug or plug top. The socket is referred to as a socket or sometimes people refer to it as an outlet. It is also referred to as a power point, plug socket, wall socket or wall plug. A socket is covered by a protective cover called a wall plate, face plate or outlet cover.
Power connectors for portable electronic devices were first introduced in the 1880s. Before power connectors were plugged into the wall people plugged appliances into light sockets. When light socket plugs were replaced by wall-mounted outlets a variety of plugs and sockets were developed to address the issues of convenience and to protect people against electric shock. Today there are exactly 20 types of plugs used across the globe. Many of these sockets are obsolete and cannot be used with modern sockets.
In order to facilitate trade and to benefit user convenience, technical standards has allowed for power sockets to be compatible in a wide range of regions. This makes it easier for people to travel with appliances and it makes it easier for appliances to be sold on a global level. There are some multi-standard sockets made that are compatible with a variety of plugs. If you improvise or alter a socket to be compatible with another type of plug the safety of the improvised electronic device cannot be guaranteed.