Tech News, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and the Internet

What is USB OTG and How does it Work?

We are living in a smartphone era where a pocket device takes charge of even computers. One of the main buying factors of a smartphone is its internal storage. Do you buy a phone that offers only 16 GB of USB storage and gives no expandable options?

I don’t think so. Considering the space the phone takes for system files and app storage, we get around 11 GB out of that 16. If you already bought such a device, you can overcome the lack of space problem through USB OTG.

What is USB OTG?


Universal Serial Bus On- The- Go aka USB OTG is the feature that adds USB device compatibility to mobile devices. The term was first used in 2001 but took a few more years to be fully real.

Every smartphone today comes with a micro- USB port through which we charge the device. But in OTG supported devices, we can use the same port to plug in a thumb drive, digital camera or input devices (Mouse and keyboard).

How does USB OTG Work?

USB OTG works the same as that of ordinary USB. The conventional USB system works on a master- slave agreement. One device (most probably your computer) acts as the master while the peripheral (may be a pen drive or your mobile phone) works as the slave. Master device provide instructions and transfer data in either way.

For a device to be OTG supported, it should have the ability to be both the master and slave. If you connect it to a computer, it takes the role of a slave. But when we plug in a USB device such as a thumb drive, the mobile phone becomes the host or master.

You can control your OTG supported device with mice, keyboards and even it can be connected to musical instruments as well. So, whenever you find insufficient space on your device, just plug in a flash drive and move files to it.

How can You Connect a USB Device with Mobile Phone?


At first, you need to make sure that the device is OTG supported. Checking the package of your device can help you with it.

The image given below is the globally accepted emblem of USB OTG. If you find this sign on the package, your device can support USB devices.

what's usb otg

What if you don’t have the package with you?

Keep calm and have a Google search.

I hope the above steps help you in determining the OTG compatibility of your device. As the final step, you can connect a USB device to your smartphone. If it works, your device is USB OTG supported.

Let me ask you one thing now. Have you ever found a USB port on a smartphone? I haven’t seen one yet. But I use my pen drive regularly with my phone. How?

We get only a micro USB port to plug in pen drives and other devices. An OTG cable can make your phone able to connect to devices.

An OTG cable is a simple wire with two connection ends. One is a micro USB end that fits well with your phone. Another end is a USB port where we need to plug USB drives. You don’t have to shell out a large amount to buy an OTG cable. I have purchased one for $3 only.


If you are a kind of guy who hates wires and is in love with the wireless stuff, you can buy OTG pen drives (when storage is your only concern).

By default, some devices do not support OTG but still you can root your android phone to use USB OTG.

Wrapping Up

I hope you have got something to add your tech knowledge. USB OTG has become a brandable term nowadays that people look for when purchasing a smartphone.

Also, if you are finding any issues with the USB OTG connectivity, check how to fix USB OTG issues.

Share this article
Shareable URL
Prev Post

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ are first to have Bluetooth 5.0, Gigabit LTE Speeds

Next Post

What are Smartphone USB OTG Issues and How to fix them

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Read next
Subscribe to our newsletter
Get a weekly digest of the tech and blockchain updates, to keep yourselves updated of the happenings. Subscribe to the weekly newsletter.