The LG Nexus 4 doesn’t have USB OTG enabled, even though Google says it does

lg nexus 4 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here

Due to the fact that it is  sold out all over the US, I have yet to get my hands on an LG Nexus 4. I’m fairly convinced that I will buy one as soon as it goes back on sale, but a few small issues have me at least a little bit concerned about the Nexus. Some reports say that battery life is less than stellar, but right now what has me most worried are some reports that the Nexus 4 currently isn’t working with any USB OTG peripherals.

According to reports from XDA, users haven’t been able to get any USB peripherals to work with the Nexus 4, although the device’s user guide mentions USB OTG support as a feature. This is quite odd, especially considering that stock Android has built in drivers for mouse and keyboard use, and very little would have to be done to enable USB host capabilities on the device. Even with third party apps like StickMount on rooted devices, the Nexus 4 is said not to support USB devices with the stock kernel. (In contrast, my Nexus 7 immediately worked with USB storage even when perfectly stock.)

I first started using USB OTG with my Samsung Galaxy Nexus as a way to add more media storage, and since then I’ve begun using USB OTG capabilities quite a bit with both the Galaxy Nexus and ASUS Nexus 7, especially for peripherals like USB mice. It certainly isn’t an essential feature, but it is something that I have been using more and more. There’s obviously a high chance that the feature will be unlocked with custom software, but I’m still a bit disappointed that it isn’t enabled out of the box, especially since Google only offers 8GB and 16GB versions of the smartphone. Hopefully Google adds the feature in an update, but if not it will just be another reason to use CyanogenMod instead of the stock software.

[xda-developers via GSM Arena]
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Aaron Orquia

Aaron Orquia is an associate editor at Pocketables. He has been using Android and Linux since he bought his first computer years ago, and his interest in technology, software, and tweaking both to work just right has only grown stronger since then. His current gadgets include a OnePlus One, a Pebble smartwatch, and an Acer C720 Chromebook.

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