1

I have seen lots of people using their Raspberry Pi Zero as a USB device by connecting it to a host computer via USB and are able to SSH into it locally (https://learn.adafruit.com/turning-your-raspberry-pi-zero-into-a-usb-gadget/overview)

However, this cannot be done the Raspberry Pi 3 or any other of the RP boards. So I am wondering what feature does the Zero have, that allows this to work, but is missing in the RP 3?

3

The raspberrypi 0 has a USB OTG port which can act as a host or a client, unlike regular USB ports which can only be one of those. Or in the case of charging only ports neither host or client.

1

RPi boards other than Zero cannot connect to a host computer via USB because data pins on their microUSB connectors are not connected to anything. Here's a screenshot of RPi 3 schematics:

enter image description here

  • OTG pins cannot be routed to USB-A ports, only to microUSB. All broadcom chips have OTG capability, Pi-zero is unique exactly because those pins are routed. – Dmitry Grigoryev Oct 28 '16 at 14:40

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