USB options appear when you connect your mobile phone to your computer. Which to choose

USB options appear when you connect your mobile phone to your computer

Have you ever wondered what all those options that appear on the screen of your phone mean as soon as you connect it to your computer? Some of them are pretty clear, but others get lost in a conglomerate of acronyms that we may not fully understand.

Connecting a mobile phone to USB is one of the most common and useful features we can find. The connection that was born with the advent of today’s smartphones and opened up a whole world of possibilities. Of course, he “accommodates” in his interior many options that are not so clear when connected.

To bring order to everyone USB connection tools what the mobile phone has to offer, we have created this short guide. To choose one or the other, you just need to display the connection notification that appears at the top of your phone and choose the one that best suits your needs.

USB options

USB connection options from mobile phone to PC

After you display this panel, you will find yourself, depending on the make and model of your mobile phone, from some options. This is what most manufacturers usually offer.

Charge your mobile

There is no particular explanation. If you activate this option or the option called “Do not transfer data”, you will ensure that your smartphone will only connect to the computer in order to use its energy. It is logical that this is not a recommended option, since the voltage of the computer, let alone the voltage of the laptop, will never be the same as when the phone is connected directly to the mains.

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Let’s say you can use this USB connectivity if you are in no rush to charge your phone battery and what interests you most is that it does not turn off.

File Transfer (MTP)

The main option with which we all connect our mobile to the computer, or it works Windows or macOS. MTP stands for Media Transfer Protocol, and you guessed it, when choosing this configuration, the team will assume that the phone is a portable media player, which is to a certain extent due to the fact that we do not stop using it as a hard drive. where we store photos, music, documents and any other type of files.

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By selecting this option, you will see how the mobile phone is identified among the options Windows like an external drive that you can access folder by folder to view its contents and transfer to your computer easily.


PTP stands for Picture Transfer Protocol. In this scenario, the computer is fooled into thinking that the phone is a digital camera. In fact, this is a more limited option than the previous one, because instead of working with any type of file, it only leaves us with the image formats that we have stored in the internal memory of the phone.

For this reason, we recommend using this tool only if the MTP option is unable to establish a connection, or if you are using an image editing and cataloging program that makes it easy to import files this way.

Share USB connection

One of the most useful features, especially when we are having problems connecting to the Wi-Fi network in our house or we do not have a direct network to connect to our laptop. This will allow us to share the data connection that we have concluded on the smartphone with the computer, with the subsequent consumption of data, of course.

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If we check this option, we will only turn our smartphone into a kind of portable modem, instead of sharing the wireless connection, we will do it via a USB cable, avoiding complex configurations.


This is one of the modes that is only available on certain brands of mobile devices and which you will rarely use.

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This is a built-in feature with Android Marshmallow targeting audio files. Musical Instrument Digital Interface is a standard that allows instruments to be connected to a mobile phone, but this is actually not something we are going to use often when syncing a phone to a PC.

Why can’t I find any of these options?

Peace USB connection is very broad and not only varies between brands, but tools can be added or removed, even if it is a smartphone from the same company, but with a different operating system. In general, all smartphones on the market allow you to transfer files and charge a mobile phone when connected to a computer, but, depending on the manufacturer, other parameters may differ.

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For example, in the case of Google Pixels, when you connect your phone to your computer via USB, you will see an additional “Android Auto” option appear. Likewise on Xiaomi On mobile phones, you may not find MIDI parameters or turn your phone into an external modem connected by cable to your computer.

Be that as it may, there are tools on the Internet, like the ones we’ll see next, that allow you to connect your phone to your computer to enable other features.

What else can you do with your mobile phone by connecting it to USB

These options require additional software and will not appear directly on the phone screen when we plug its USB cable into the computer, but are worth trying for the utilities they provide to the user.

Watch mobile phone screen on PC

One of the main uses of a USB connection between a phone and a PC is to view all the contents of our smartphone played on our computer screen. Thus, we can receive calls, read notifications, check messages and do whatever we would do with our mobile phone, but on the big screen, without having to constantly refer to the small display. There are brands that already have the tools to do this, like Samsung,

  • Samsung Dex: The name “DeX” comes from “Desktop Experience” which perfectly describes what it does. DeX transforms your Samsung phone’s interface into something more like a PC and lets you view its contents on any device. DeX originally required Samsung’s proprietary dock and wired connection to run, but today it works wirelessly.
  • Your phone is from Microsoft : Although you initially required a USB cable to connect your phone to your computer and view its contents through the Microsoft Your Phone app, now you only need your OneDrive account to do so. All you need is a smartphone with Android 7.0 or higher and company credentials.
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Use mobile apps on your computer

Without a doubt, the most interesting thing about viewing the contents of your mobile phone on the big screen the ability to use Android applications without leaving your computer. In this way, we can use the keyboard and mouse to navigate them and make it much easier to write texts, exchange messages or exchange files that we have hosted on a PC through instant messaging applications.

Of course, this applies to games. Almost all Android games today are designed to be playable on touch screens, and for this reason, playing them from a PC is not optimal unless you reconfigure the controls to use your keyboard and mouse. Then you can play titles like Fortnite or Call of Duty Mobility like never before.

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