How to use a USB Flash Drive with Android


Although most modern Android devices do not lack storage options, a time may come when one may want to use a flash drive with their phone. This is good because Android natively supports external drives.

How to Connect a Flash Drive to Your Phone

How you connect the flash drive to your phone depends on what type of USB port your phone has: USB-C or Micro USB.

If Your Phone has USB-C

If you use new tech and your device is one with a USB-C port and you’re in the market for a new flash drive, you can buy one with a USB-C and A connections. This allows you to use the same drive on your phone and computer without needing an adapter.

All you need to do is plug it into your phone and that’s it.

If, however, you already have a traditional USB Type-A flash drive, you’ll need an A-to-C adapter. You can get those from Amazon.

When you have the appropriate adapter, attach it onto the drive and plug it into your phone.

If Your Phone has Micro-USB

Like with USB-C, you could buy a Micro USB flash drive if you want a new one, though they’re not really common. In fact, you’ll have limited choices, so it’s best to just get a more traditional USB-A drive and an adapter.

For the adapter, you’ll need a USB OTG cable. The cable has a male micro USB connector on one side and female USB A jack on the other. Plug your flash drive into the USB A jack, and then plug the other end of the adapter into your phone. You can also get them on Amazon.

How to Access a Flash Drive on Android

Regardless of the phone or drive, once it’s plugged in, you’ll get a notification.

If the drive isn’t properly formatted, you’ll get a notification letting you know that. You can take care of that right from your phone, just tap the notification to jump into the format screen.

Keep in mind that formatting completely erases the drive, so if the goal is to get something off of it and onto your phone, formatting may not be a good idea. Instead, copy the data off the drive onto your computer, format the drive properly, and then copy the data back onto it.

If your flash drive is properly formatted, tapping the notification opens the file explorer where you can interact with the contents of the drive as if they were natively stored on the phone.

You can long-press on items and them copy/cut and paste them to and from the flash drive, just like you would locally.



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