How to Connect a USB Flash Drive to Huawei Honor

In this article I will talk about using the function USB OTG (USB On-The-Go) using the example of a Honor 4C smartphone with Android 6. The essence of the OTG function is that the smartphone has a built-in USB host that provides 5V power and connects to other devices: external drives and input devices. The article shows how this function works and which connections are really useful.

OTG connection

For this you need OTG adapter with Micro USB connectors / plug. USB A (female). I purchased the GC-MB2AF:

Micro USB stick

Another option. flash drives that do not need an OTG adapter appeared on sale, because they have a connector for connecting directly to smartphones, for example, Kingston DataTraveler microDUO:

The presence of two connectors at once. Micro-USB and regular USB allows you to use such a USB flash drive with both a smartphone and a computer without the need to purchase and carry an OTG adapter.

Smartphone setup

The OTG function is enabled in Settings / Management / OTG:

After changing the parameter, you will need to restart the phone. After that, you can connect the adapter to the phone, and then connect different devices to the adapter.

USB drive connection

When a USB flash drive is connected, a notification appears:

By clicking on View the contents of the flash drive are opened, and when pressed Eject changes are saved, and the USB flash drive is disconnected from the phone in the same way as it does on the computer.

All programs see the flash drive as an additional storage location, for example, an embedded application Files displays it as USB stick:

Total Commander designates it as simple USB, with flash drive icon:

Other applications also correctly open folders and files on a USB flash drive. built-in applications for viewings and photos, external applications Adobe Acrobat Reader, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, OneDrive, etc.

The Blue Mail mail client puts a file from a USB flash drive into a new letter without problems, but for some reason it does not make it possible to save the attachment from the letter to a USB flash drive. only to a MicroSD card.

The ability to work directly with a flash drive is very useful:

  • you can quickly send or upload to the Internet some files from a USB flash drive via a telephone, if such a need suddenly arises,
  • you can quickly download files from cloud storage to a USB flash drive, if you need to transfer files to someone on a USB flash drive,
  • You can drop photos ands from the phone to the USB flash drive, then insert the USB flash drive into the TV and see the photo on the big screen.

I used an 8 GB USB flash drive formatted in FAT32. After reformatting to NTFS, it still works with the phone.

How to Connect a USB Flash Drive to Huawei Honor

It is possible that with large volumes (more than 32 GB) or other file systems there will be some features. For example, MicroSD cards larger than 32 GB Honor 4C does not officially support.

The USB connection of a 250 GB hard drive formatted in NTFS was unsuccessful. the drive received power (the indicator turned on), but was not detected.

At the same time, the Transcend 20GB USB drive was detected successfully. Probably the difference in disk capacity.

Mouse or keyboard connection

Through OTG, you can connect input devices. a mouse or keyboard. When the mouse is connected, there is no notification, but the pointer immediately appears:

Positioning with a mouse is more accurate than a finger, but, in my opinion, for normal use it does not give a big advantage. Hold the smartphone with one hand and drive the mouse with the other?

The same thing with the keyboard. probably it will be more convenient to write a book or type long emails, only who does it from a smartphone?

Camera connection

On the Internet they write that cameras should work through OTG with smartphones, but I didn’t have this bundle of Honor 4C. Canon PowerShot. Canon seemed to understand that something was connected to it (because it did not extend the lens when it was turned on), but the phone did not find anything.

Most likely, on the phone side there is no support for the PTP (Picture Transfer Protocol) protocol, on which the camera works.

USB flash drives work like MSC (USB Mass Storage Class) devices, so successful operation of a USB flash drive with a smartphone does not guarantee that the camera will connect as well.

And so, the ability to connect the camera to a smartphone via OTG would be convenient, for example, to copy photos from the camera through a cable to the phone. Instead, you have to copy through a memory card, removing it from the camera, installing it in a card reader and connecting via the same OTG to a smartphone. that is, you will also need a card reader.

Connect another smartphone

A curious option for transferring files between smartphones, or at least for charging another smartphone from Honor 4C.

I tried to connect the Lumia 820. no effect, no data, no charging. Most likely, such a load is too big for the built-in USB host.

Later I found a couple of old smartphones. Samsung on Android 4 and HTC on Windows Mobile: both were charged via OTG, but their files were not available. The battery on the donor smartphone, of course, discharges very quickly with such a connection, and it only makes sense as the ability to urgently and briefly support another phone if it suddenly sat down and there was no external battery with it.

OTG Conclusions

As a result, the OTG function allows you to connect some USB devices to the Honor 4C smartphone, but the most useful is the ability to exchange information via flash drives without a computer. Other connection options are not very useful.

Therefore, it is strange that the USB host is not available on newer models of Honor 5C, 5X, 6X. Apparently, to save.

Lumia 820 does not support OTG either.

To check by technical characteristics whether a particular smartphone model has OTG support, you can also focus on the USB Host parameter (sometimes it is indicated instead of USB OTG in the description).