If you have an Android phone with OTG (On The Go) function, then you're in luck. You just need to buy a compatible 5.5mm flexible videoscope (easily found online for 5-20$) and the AirAngel Blade. You'll likely need to download a separate app from the Google Play store as well. Check out our LINKS page to see an app we have tried and recommend. Watch our video tutorials on how to put it all together.
What is OTG and how do I know if my Android phone has OTG?
"USB On-The-Go, often abbreviated to USB OTG or just OTG, is a specification first used in late 2001 that allows USB devices, such as tablets or smartphones, to act as a host, allowing other USB devices, such as USB flash drives, digital cameras, mice or keyboards, to be attached to them."
Basically for our purposes, it allows your Android smartphone to access and use the videoscope once it's plugged into your phone.
The easiest way to tell if your Android phone supports OTG function is to check the box it came in or check the manufacturer information online. Most Android phones support OTG, but not all. You can also check out out our LINKS page to browse a third party list of OTG compatible devices.
Plug in videoscopes do NOT work with iPhones.
"it was a great hit and very popular with the other anesthesia providers...it was very useful and I really thank you immensely!"
- Sheila, MD
MEDICAL MISSION TRIP PHILIPPINES
What if I don't have an Android phone with OTG function but would like to use the Android System?
Acquiring an Android smartphone with OTG function is not as expensive as it may seem. We tested our videoscope on a Samsung S3. You can buy a good used one on ebay or Craigslist for about $50. We got ours for free! How? By asking friends and family if anyone had an old one laying around. You might get lucky too. Once you have your Android smartphone, follow the same steps found in the first paragraph of this page. Don't forget to watch our video tutorial on how to assemble it all. We also have a video that talks about compatibility issues between the phone and videoscope.
Why choose the android system?
If you already have an Android phone with OTG function this is the most affordable option, as 5.5mm flexible videoscopes range between 5-20$ online and can be bought on many websites.
Modern Android smartphones have great battery life and high screen resolution.
The videoscopes are waterproof
Very compact and convenient to travel with.
Great opportunity to reuse/donate old and unwanted Android smartphones.
What do I need to do?
There are many places to buy the 5.5mm flexible videoscope for Android smartphones. The button below will link you to a scope (Amazon.com) that we have tried with our blade and works well. It has a micro USB connection and will plug directly into any Android phone with a micro USB port. Make sure it is compatible with your phone before you buy it.
There are many other options out there and the AirAngel should be able to fit all 5.5mm flexible videoscopes. One of the nice things about this system is that the videoscope, the Android phone, and the AirAngel blade are all easily replaceable, which is ideal for a VL system in a third world country. We recommend buying a videoscope that is 1 meter in length. Longer ones will work the same, but you'll just have to deal with more cable length than you need. Because they are relatively inexpensive we recommend bringing an extra videoscope with you while you are working in remote areas. Most plug in videoscopes have a micro USB connection. Some may have a USB or USB-C connection. Make sure your scope is compatible with your phone or you may need to buy a separate adaptor.
When searching online you will find wireless videoscopes that can pair with iPhones. We have tested a few of these and have found them to be not reliable enough for emergent airway management (video lag and connection issues). If you are looking to using it only for a training tool, then they are certainly an option.