Is OTG Cable Same as Mini USB to USB Adapter?

The Divergent

Junior Member
Aug 26, 2014
4
0
I'm confused. New to tablets (browsing, i don't own one yet) and i see lots of tablets have a mini usb port that hooks up to a cable they call an OTG or On The Go cable. It looks like to me this cable is only a simple USB Mini to full size USB adapter - with a fancy name - ?

Is this correct or is there something different or special about this cable that I'm missing?

Thanks in advance!
 

leeshor

Senior Member
Dec 27, 2011
6,331
1,037
The pin-outs on the cable are not the same. On tablets that have a USB port and a USB charging port the OTG cable would only work on the charging port. Most tablets where the OTG cable are necessary don't have a standard USB port.
 

The Divergent

Junior Member
Aug 26, 2014
4
0
I see.. I think.. so, a standard (or mini) USB in a tablet ( even if i have to use a mini usb to full size usb adapter) would actually be better to have than the OTG port and cable?

The tablet I am looking at is a:

"Contixo Q102 10.1" Quad Core Google Android 4.4 KitKat Tablet PC, 1GB RAM, 32GB Nand Flash, Bluetooth, Dual Camera, HDMI, Google Play Pre-installed, 3D Game Supported"

http://www.amazon.com/Contixo-Q102-Bluetooth-Pre-installed-Supported/dp/B00ITCEHAA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1409181927&sr=8-1&keywords=q102 32g tablet#productDetails

I understand it comes with a microSD port and a mini 2.0 usb port. I thought it odd it didn't mention the OTG cable like lots of other ads i've looked at, so that prompted me to ask the question.
 

leeshor

Senior Member
Dec 27, 2011
6,331
1,037
If it has the USB port, for most people they wouldn't have a need for the OTG cable. It's primarily used for tablets that don't have the USB in the first place.
 

Johna2u

Senior Member
May 21, 2011
372
52
An otg cable allows the tablet to run flash drives usb keyboards etc. A standard micro usb male to full size usb female is not the same. The pin outs in an otg cable tell the tablet to run as a master device. Normally it connects as a slave storage device.
So :
An otg cable will allow you to run other devices.
A micro usb to full usb adaper will not.even though they look the same.

Sent from my GT-N8013
 
Last edited:

The Divergent

Junior Member
Aug 26, 2014
4
0
Thanks for the info guys. I'm getting conflicting reports on if this tablet supports OTG or if it comes with such a cable. Let's assume it does support OTG. My plan is to have a USB Hub with many devices connected to make this tablet a small desktop like unit.

I plan to add a USB keyboard, mouse, external hard drive, external alpha antenna via wifi dongle, extra battery pack to power/charge the tablet and any devices that need external power - and a few other things..

I suppose I would have to use the OTG cable on the USB Hub coming from the tablet, then just plug everything else into the other side of the USB Hub? Is this correct?
 

Johna2u

Senior Member
May 21, 2011
372
52
Yes the otg adapter plugs directly into the tablet. Then plug your usb hub into the otg adaper. Make sure you get a powered usb hub. You won't be able to run all that stuff off the tablet battery. I'm not sure what kind of tablet you have but if the charge port is the same one you need to plug the otg into it may not charge at the same time.

Sent from my GT-N8013
 

Percival

Senior Member
Sep 7, 2014
7
1
Johna2u wrote:

"An otg cable allows the tablet to run flash drives usb keyboards etc. A standard micro usb male to full size usb female is not the same. The pin outs in an otg cable tell the tablet to run as a master device. Normally it connects as a slave storage device.
So :
An otg cable will allow you to run other devices.
A micro usb to full usb adaper will not.even though they look the same."

leeshor wrote:

"If it has the USB port, for most people they wouldn't have a need for the OTG cable. It's primarily used for tablets that don't have the USB in the first place."

From what I've read online, OTG is for interconnecting devices that normally slave to a computer so they can talk to each other without needing a computer. Frinst, sideloading pics from a digital camera to a tablet or phone so you can post them online, or vice versa. Also peripherals like KBs etc.

That sounds reasonable, but... why does my Zeepad 2.7 have *two* male micro USB ports- one labeled "host", the other labeled "OTG"? Worse, when I want to connect my tablet to my computer I have to use the OTG port- my laptop doesn't even notice the tablet's host port. Worst, I used an ordinary USB adapter and cable from my grab-bag-o-USB-stuff.

Are they just labeled "wrong", that is, in the reverse of the usual convention? I haven't tried connecting anything else to the tablet yet, like a camera or KB.

Or, am I just doin it rong using an ordinary cable on the OTG port, and my laptop saw the tablet as an external storage device by dumb luck?

The Android learning curve has some weird bumps in it.
 

Johna2u

Senior Member
May 21, 2011
372
52
You are right in what otg does. Your description of your ports is confusing though. You say you have two male usb ports on the tablet? You must mean female. One labeled host and the other labeled otg. Those are two terms for the same thing. An otg cable enables "host" mode on the tablet. It should say host/otg and charge/sync probably. What exact model do you have?

Sent from my GT-N8013 using Tapatalk
 

Percival

Senior Member
Sep 7, 2014
7
1
Johna2u wrote

"You are right in what otg does. Your description of your ports is confusing though. You say you have two male usb ports on the tablet? You must mean female. One labeled host and the other labeled otg. Those are two terms for the same thing. An otg cable enables "host" mode on the tablet. It should say host/otg and charge/sync probably. What exact model do you have?"

It's a Zeepad 7.2 - that's what it says on the back, and nothing else but the usual youtube etc. labels and what the buttons/sockets etc. are for. (I typed 2.7 above, my dumb). In the settings menu there's nothing after MID. It runs Android 2.3 on an ARMv7 processor, and that's about all I can find out since whoever manufactured it no longer supports it online.

No, one port is labeled "host" and the other is labeled "OTG". And yeah, now that I look closely, they're both female.

I bought it at a yard sale, with no manual or stylus. I've been learning it as I go along, poking at things to see what they do, along with online generic help like these forums and the official Android sites. Some stuff I have no referents for (from my Windows experience) like the host/OTG thing, but I'm picking it up fairly quickly.
 

Johna2u

Senior Member
May 21, 2011
372
52
Well sounds like fun. I would probably bought it too. I hope you didn't pay more than 20 bucks for it though. 2.3 is a really old version of android. Are the usb ports full size? I guess the best way to test it is plug a flash drive into it and see if the tablet will run it. If it is otg the light on the flash drive will start blinking because the tablet is giving it power. Basically that is what otg does. It sends power to accessories and runs them.

Sent from my GT-N8013 using Tapatalk
 

Percival

Senior Member
Sep 7, 2014
7
1
Johna2u wrote:

"Well sounds like fun. I would probably bought it too. I hope you didn't pay more than 20 bucks for it though. 2.3 is a really old version of android. Are the usb ports full size? I guess the best way to test it is plug a flash drive into it and see if the tablet will run it. If it is otg the light on the flash drive will start blinking because the tablet is giving it power. Basically that is what otg does. It sends power to accessories and runs them."

I spent US$5.00 on it since I'd been wanting a tablet to play with. The seller claimed not to know if it worked. I figured worst case it wouldn't charge, then I'd get to take it apart to see what was inside.

Yeah, it's practically ancient, but it does work, and best of all I discovered that all Zeepads come rooted from the factory. I need to find a file manager app that supports renaming so I can make the cellphone software stop eating the battery looking for a signal- the tablet has no cellphone hardware, but the software module for it runs anyway (yet there's no Airplane Mode in settings). Seems sloppy to me, but maybe it's just standard practice on cheap tablets?

Both ports are female mini-USBs. I've been too busy to play with it lately but your suggestion sounds perfect, thanks. If it works I'll try a KB and webcam I have laying around somewhere too. I'll post the results. Maybe that "generic" cable I used to connect with my laptop is really an OTG.
 
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