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How to Connect Standard USB Devices to your Android Device

Posted by on February 19, 2014

Many of the Android devices on the market today support USB OTG (On-The-Go). This allows users to connect standard USB devices such as keyboards, mice, or even extend storage using a regular USB flash drive.

However, you can’t plug the peripheral device directly into it as Android device does not have a standard USB port. In order for your Android phone or tablet to connect to the device, you’ll need a USB OTG cable.

A USB OTG cable is a small cable with a male micro-USB connector on one end and a female full size USB port on the other, so that you can plug it into the Micro-USB port on your device and allows you to connect standard USB 2.0 devices. These kinds of cables can be purchased for few dollars at Amazon.

USB OTG cable

SANOXY Micro USB OTG to USB 2.0 Adapter

Note: Not all Android devices support USB OTG and no single USB OTG cable out there which is compatible with every phone so be sure to read the product description before purchasing one.

Once you have a USB OTG cable, just plug it into your device and connect the USB device directly to it, and your peripherals should work without any additional configuration.

I have paired the USB OTG cable with my Samsung Galaxy S3 and have found that the adapter works with most standard USB devices.

  • USB Flash Drive
    When you plug a flash drive into the USB adapter, the device immediately displays the contents. You are then free to view or playback any media you have on the drive. You can also move data from the USB drive to your phone SD card by simply tapping and holding the file you want to move.
  • USB Mouse
    When you plug a mouse into your phone or tablet, a pointer will show up on the phone screen. You can then use your mouse to swipe through pages, select apps and more.
  • USB Keyboard
    If you find yourself doing a lot of typing on the go, you can connect a USB keyboard to your device. Once you plug it in using the OTG cable, simply open up a notepad app and you can start typing on the keyboard as usual. It’s also possible to use shortcuts such as Ctrl+C and Ctrl+Z.
  • USB Gamepad Controller
    Its also possible to connect a gaming controller to your Android device and play a video game just like on the console. Just plug the controller into the USB adapter and launch a game such as GTA. Not every game works with this, so you’ll have to do some testing to find out if your favorite games will work.

These are just a few USB devices that have been found to work with OTG cable on Android device. My advice is to try other devices too, and see how the OTG cable can add a lot of new functions to your Android phone or tablet.