I have a sugestion for the Android platform developers.
As a regular user, I very much hope that the platform will implement
and support the USB Host feature (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB_On-
The almost entry-level phones today already have ARM 11 396 MHz CPU,
128 MB of RAM (see Nokia 6120 for example, wich costs 200 Euro). This
hardware is equivalent to the computers we were using some time
before. Back in the years 1999-2000, many of us were using computers
with same level of processing power and memory. Those computers had
USB ports that were allowing us to connect many kind of peripherals to
them. The feature was possible mainly because the operating systems
Back to the phones today, they already have enough processing power
and memory to do that. The only part its missing, is a fully capable
software platform to support the USB Host feature. If the Android
platform will offer this capability, this will encourage and push the
mobile phone manufacturers to implement the hardware, which is really
easy. They only have to add a USB controller and to make phones with
regular USB plugs just like those plugs that computers come with.
I hope this message will be read by Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Eric
Schmidt, and the other brains that are behind the Google Android
Once the platform will support this, the manufacturers of peripherals
will be encouraged and even forced by sales numbers to develop drivers
for their peripherals for the Android platform
Implementing the USB on the Go feature on a phone, will allow you to
conect to the phone:
- regular keyboards - imagine how easy you enter contacts, edit notes
and other text information into your phone when you go to home / work
and connect the keyboards from the computers you are using there.
- regular mice
- flash drivers, card readers, external hard drives, foto camera
- printers - so you can easily print the photos you make wit the built
in camera, and office documents you edit from the phone.
- monitors (with a USB-to-VGA adapter, like the HTC Advantage X7510
- WiFi cards
- USB ethernet cards - this would be an imensely great feature.
Because with propper software you can test an ethernet port (ping,
etc), even test UTP cables - like the expensive Fluke devices do. Just
imagine how convenient is to test a network without taking the laptop
with you and without buying expensive network testing tools.
- TV Tuners
- another phone that will stay in "slave mode"
- web camera - maybe it's a silly idea, but hey, why not?
- pen tablets :)
- USB hubs - so you will be able to connect all the above peripherals
to the phone in the same time.
the idea is not new, the PDA's already have something like that trough
the CFIO/SDIO cards but extending a smartphone capabilities trough
USB its just so much better.