An OTG or On The Go Adapter (OTG cable or OTG connector) connects a full-sized USB flash drive or USB A cable to your phone or tablet via the Micro USB or USB-C charging port.
The cord has a micro-connector for your phone on one end, and a USB-A connector on the other end. The cord is typically not very long and is usually black but can come in multiple colors.
These cables have many uses, and when you purchase a device like a camera, phone, etc., it is likely that one of these cords may be included.
Table of contents
- Real World Example
- Types of USB OTG Cables
- More Uses For a USB OTG Cable
- Final Thoughts
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Real World Example
Have you ever been stuck not knowing how to access files in your Android phone while on the go?
If so, the USB OTG or On The Go cable makes this easy! With this device, you can connect a full-sized USB A cable or USB flash drive to your tablet or smartphone via the USB-C or Micro charging point.
One of the best features of Android smartphones is that they can act both as a host and peripheral. You can use them as an external drive to transfer files and to accept input from multiples gadgets. This includes an external hard drive, keyboard, other smartphones, a USB mouse, etc.
If you’re still skeptical about whether the USB OTG cable is useful, below is a list of how you can use them.
Types of USB OTG Cables
Different manufacturers on the market sell OTG cables, with all of them having similar functionality. With that said, they do have one distinguishing difference, and that is whether they are unpowered or powered.
Understanding this difference is crucial as it impacts your phone’s battery life and helps you understand your equipment’s functionality.
- An unpowered USB OTG Cord can connect an external charger that delivers power to the external gadget with adequate amperage to provide the USB gadget with power. It is best to use these when powering devices that need considerable power, such as a USB microphone. The powered cable can offer additional amperage to boost the phone when it is powering these power-draining devices.
- An unpowered USB OTG cable is an ideal choice when connecting a low amperage gadget such as a keyboard or mouse to your phone. Your phone’s port will provide enough amperage to power these types of devices.
Connecting A Portable External Hard Drive
With a USB OTG cable, you can connect a bootable hard drive plus any other kind of Expandable SSD Memory to your phone. When doing this, you only need a single cable between the expandable storage and your smartphone. You shouldn’t connect your phone to the external hard drive since it consumes a lot of power.
You can also use the USB OTG cable to switch on a USB light using your phone.
Related Article: What does an HDMI cable look like
More Uses For a USB OTG Cable
Connect Your Camera
You can use the USB OTG cable to connect a camera to your Android phone and transfer pictures. This process is made effortless thanks to this cable. In addition, you can use the cable to directly control the DSLR camera using certain DSLR apps directly from your phone.
However, for this to be done, you need to have a phone with OTG support.
Connect To a Mouse and Keyboard
Use a USB OTG cable to connect your tablet or Android phone to a mouse or keyboard. After doing this, you can start using your smartphone as a computer or laptop.
Connect to a Game Controller
If you’re a gaming enthusiast, you know that playing games on your phone aren’t quite as exciting as playing on your PC or Xbox. If you want to change this, getting a USB OTG cable is, without a doubt, the best solution. With this cable, you can connect a game controller to your smartphone and start playing your favorite game.
Use Your Phone as a Power Bank
If you have two phones and one’s battery level is running low, don’t worry if you have a USB OTG cable. Using this cable, you can effortlessly connect the phone running low on power.
Record Audio Using an External Microphone
The USB OTG cable is useful in helping you record the sound of your voice when you don’t have a mic or want an extra external microphone. This is very convenient, especially when you’re on a tight budget and don’t want to invest a considerable sum of money to buy a new microphone.
Printing Documents Saved On Your Android Phone
Another appealing aspect of the USB OTG cable is that it allows you to print documents using your Android phone. Connect the OTG cable to your smartphone and download a print share app from the Google Play Store. Now you are all set to start printing documents from your Android phone via the USB OTG cable.
Connecting to a Ethernet Cable
Using an in-house internet broadband service that comes with a cable is an excellent way to enjoy fast and stable internet connectivity. All you need to do is connect the cable to your Android phone and the USB LAN adapter.
Connect a USB Fan
There are different kinds of USB fans on the market. Use one and start enjoying a cool breeze by connecting the USB fan to your Android smartphone via this cable.
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Almost every tablet and smartphone available on the market support USB On-The-Go cables. If you aren’t sure about this or own an older phone, download the USB OTG checker app for free on your device to confirm whether it connects to the OTG cable.
The iOS platform doesn’t support the USB OTG cable, so at the moment, you still can’t use it to connect to an iPhone or any other iOS gadget. But some tricks may help you in this regard. You can check here.
This article provides multiple uses for the USB On-The-Go cable. With this in mind, you’re better positioned to know to decide whether or not this is something you need.