How to Connect USB Devices to Your Android Phone

A little known fact is that many of the Android devices on the market today are compatible with a technology called USB On The Go or USB OTG for short. USB OTG lets you turn your Android phone or tablet into a USB host and connect standard USB accessories including flash drives, hard drives, gaming controllers, keyboards and more. You may find it difficult to believe that you can connect a USB device such as a flash drive into the micro USB port on your device. All this is possible thanks to a cheap OTG cable. OTG cables are available from many stores such as Amazon for a few bucks or less.
Please note, USB OTG is not compatible with every phone and table and in some cases only a few USB accessories might work with your phone.
I have paired the OTG cable up with the Samsung Galaxy S3 and have found that the adapter works with a huge number of USB devices.
USB Flash Drives
When you plug a flash drive into your phone or tablet, 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.
Other storage devices including memory card readers also work with the adapter. This means that you could take some photos with your digital camera and quickly transfer them to your Android phone for editing and uploading on an app like Instagram.
USB Mouse
When you plug a mouse into the USB port, even a wireless mouse, a pointer will show up on the screen. You can then use your mouse just as you would your finger. You can swipe through pages, select icons and more. This would be more useful on a large screen device such as a tablet, as it makes browsing the internet a much better experience.
USB Keyboard
If you find yourself doing a lot of typing on the go you’ll be happy to hear that with the mobile offers today adapter 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 Game Controller
It’s also possible to connect a PS3 controller to your Android device and not only navigate the interface but you can also play games. Just plug the controller into the USB port and launch a game such as Sonic. Not every game works with this, so you’ll have to do some testing to find out if your favourite games will work. In Sonic for example, I can use my PS3 controller the way I would use a controller on the Sega Megadrive. You can also do the same with the Xbox 360 controller, and many other PC USB controllers.
These are just a few ways the OTG cable can make your Android device a whole lot more useful. 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.