It’s been nearly two years since Google started rolling out a feature that lets you run Android apps on Chromebooks. And while Android support has come a long way, there’s one thing Android apps couldn’t do on Chromebooks… until now: access an SD card.

But starting with the latest Chrome OS beta, it looks like Android apps on Chromebooks can access the SD card… although it seems like the feature is still very much a work in progress.

Redditor marcellusmartel posted a picture yesterday that shows Android running on a Chromebook with access to an SD card. He notes that sometimes read and write can fail, but that apps can at least now see SD cards.

Other users have weighed in to note that they’re seeing the same thing on other devices running Chrome OS 67.0.3396.41 beta.

This matters because many Chromebooks have limited amounts of built-in storage, often as little as 16GB or 32GB. That may be enough for running web apps, but Android apps that use a lot of data can eat into that… especially if you use apps like Netflix or Spotify which allow you to download videos and music for offline playback.

Allowing Android apps on Chromebooks to save data to an SD card could help make them a lot more useful when you don’t have an internet connection.

Hopefully this means that by the time Linux app support is widely available on Chromebooks, you’ll also be able to access external storage as well. Right now it looks like Google is still working on allowing you to access Linux files from the Chrome OS Files app.

via Android Central

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9 replies on “Android apps on Chromebooks can finally access SD card storage”

  1. Just got the Acer Chromebook Spin 15 and also got a Samsung 128Gb micro sd memory card; currently now it does see the device id and recognizes it at 119Gb of capacity but only as a memory card device; currently I cannot get ES File Explorer to actually see the Samsung 128Gb micro sd memory card; don’t actually know if one can actually expect to hook up via USB 3.0 to SATA adapter and expect the Acer Chromebook Spin 15 to actually see an external connected physical solid state drive via USB 3.0 to SATA adapter; this is most disappointing indeed; need to know if anyone else has had any luck along these lines; any advice along these lines would be greatly appreciated in advance?

    1. I’m experiancing the same issue as you. I tried so many different apps and settings trying to get it to see the micro sd card, but so far nothing. Only the native “Files” app can see the micro sd card.

      1. So far the only thing I can do is see the physical presence of the 128Gb(119gb) micro sd card but so far have not been able to format it so that I can even use it as portable external micro sd memory card device even; currently I am using the latest Chrome OS for Chromebook Spin 15 with Pentium 8gb internal memory and 64gb ROM operating on the beta channel; I am considering using the developer channel but I currently don’t know if that offers anything more currently in regards to internal memory storage management like that on my Motorola Moto G5 plus smartphone I am able to currently use a Samsung Evo 128gb micro sd card along with the 64gb Motorola Moto G5 plus internal memory for a total of 183gb of total internal fully accessible memory; now if I could only get my $450 Acer Chrombook Spin 15 to do the same thing internal memory storage management wise as I have already one on my Motorola Moto G5 plus currently; any further input feedback reply on what you may have tried along the lines of trial and error internal memory storage management tips and techniques to successfully manage the addition of the incorporation of Samsung Evo Series U3 128gb micro sd card into ones android internal memory core storage; I also even went into my Chromebook and activated the special developer mode using the ESC + Refresh + Power button; and then follow the CTRL + “D” prompts to transition and get into the special Chrome OS Developer Mode; this is a crock of b.s. from Google apparently they are not even at all serious about bringing true world class android peformance to the masses; I won’t be drinking any more corporate google “kool aid”; until google actually stands up and delivers the goods; what on earth is the actual hold up now!!!

        1. I also even used easus free partition software to reformat the Samsung 128gb micro sd card to fat 32 bit format which is supposedly the universal format; this also further checks and verifies the Samsung 128gb micro sd card as good also at the same time as well; so far my Chromebook Spin 15 does not see or recognize the micro sd Samsung 128gb micro sd memory card in order to try and erase and reformat it and then use it so far; this is a crock of bs from the folks over at Acer; not a good scenario and situation!!!

      2. Did you try using a 128gb or 64gb flash drive device plugged into the usb 3.0 port of Acer Chromebook Spin 15 and also get the same result; were you able to get the Chromebook to see the flash drive and to be able to successfully format it either with ExFat or Fat32 format by successfully formatting it on a Windows computer?

    1. Linux apps, too. Very few Chromebooks come with the kind of storage capacity even the lowest-end pixelbook does, a couple of Android games and bigger Linux apps can make a big dent in a 32GB drive pretty quickly.

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