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I have read that samsung galaxy S3 has a 11 pin mhl connector and it can support USB OTG as well. Also I have read that the device can power the cable. I didnt quite get what is meant by USB OTG support included. Both MHL and USB OTG are there on other phones too (like sgs2 and htc one x). How do I use the 11 pin connector to my advantage?

Also if the 11 pin connecter can power the device, then why do we need to again connect power cable to the mhl adapter provided by samsung?

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2 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

USB OTG stands for USB On-The-Go. This allows your phone to use USB devices (e.g. mice, keyboards, external USB drives) through a MicroUSB to USB adapter.

The MHL adapter allows your device to connect via HDMI to a TV or monitor. The statement that it can power the device just means that it can both charge/power the phone and allow HDMI output via the MHL adapter. To get that power, though, it requires your power cable to be connected, as HDMI does not provide power. Not all MHL adapters can do this.

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Thank you for the answer. Can you please shed some light on the first part of the question too? What do they mean by USB OTG support included? How am I supposed to use USB OTG while using the MHL cable? –  user1004985 Jul 25 '12 at 5:01
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Ah, I misunderstood your original question. From what I understand, the MHL cable can simultaneously support output via HDMI and input via USB OTG (plugging a MicroUSB to USB adapter into the MHL adapter where the charging port is), but you lose the ability to charge. –  ND Geek Jul 25 '12 at 13:53
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ND Geek is correct, but the 11 pin connector on the Galaxy SIII and any new cell phone/tablet/android device using this new connector can go further.

The OTG function is simultaneous with the MHL and the normal 5 pins are the OTG pins.

OTG hosts can, indeed, power USB downstream devices, but lack current for more than mice and keyboards (or memory sticks and cameras).

A powered HUB and an OTG cable with a Micro-B on one end and a Micro-A/B on the other end (the Host end) is needed to use a HUB. With this and a power box with 2A output can allow use of hard drives and CD/DVD players. The MHL connection is brought in through the extra 6 pins on the connector (only 3 of which are used for MHL).

The ability to charge the phone at the same time as outputting MHL and OTG requires 8 of the 11 pins and Samsung is being cagey about what those other 3 pins are for. In the end, the traditional 5 pins are for the OTG and that explains why the SIII is not backwards compatible with other MHL adapters or devices. This does mean that the 11 pin devices will support OTG natively and be backwards compatible. Hmm... 8 pins... sounds familiar, somehow.

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