Android Usb Peripheral Port

This requires Android 6 or larger with full MIDI support! (Sadly not all vendors consider it necessary to support MIDI)

As of Android 6 the system supports Usb MIDI in both host and peripheral mode. Peripheral mode means that an Android device can now 'be' a MIDI device to other hosts (like PCs). To get it going, connect your device to a computer via Usb, navigate to the Android homescreen, pull down from the statusbar and touch the "USB for..." notification. This should bring up a dialog as shown on the left. Select 'MIDI' and a MIDI device named after your phone model (may also be 'Android', 'Samsung Android', 'MIDI Function' or eq.) will appear on the host PC. See the 'Nexus 5' entry in the MidiOx screenshot at the bottom of the page.

=> On some manufacturers' devices MIDI functionality needs to first be enabled in the phone's developer options. Please refer to your hardware's documentation.

To select that port in TouchDAW, touch either of the "MIDI Port" menus in the setup and select "Usb". As there will be no other Usb connectivity when this system option is active, the app will then tell you it wants to use the "Android Usb Peripheral Port" (that bulky name is how the port is actually named) and you are good to go. Select the 'Phone Name' MIDI port on the PC whereever you want to use it.

Things to note:
  • There is only one such port. That means you can either run the DAW controller over it or the MIDI tools, not both at a time! If you have selected it for either connection, no peripheral mode option will appear in the setup dialogs for the other connection.

  • Only one app can make full IO use of the port at a time. Unfortunately there is no sane way to determine if the port has already been opened by someone else. TouchDAW will just try and eventually fail.

  • When you unplug your device, the Usb mode will be reset to "Charging". Remember to reactivate "MIDI" before starting TouchDAW or it will not be able to open the port and will pop up an error dialog.

  • After repeatedly de- and reactivating the "MIDI" USB mode, it is pretty much certain that your DAW or MIDI program will no longer see or accept the port and you will at least need to make use of some "rescan MIDI" function (if available) or may need to restart the program. Eventually a full computer reboot may be required.