Google rolls out AirDrop-like file sharing feature for Android

It’s here. Android users can finally boast about having an AirDrop-like file sharing feature. It’s called Nearby Sharing and as expected, Google has launched the feature for devices running Android 6 or above. Last month, we talked about Nearby Sharing going through its final round of testing before launch. And now, it’s available to the end users.

Google says Nearby Share will work between two Android devices for now. And in the near future, people will be able to share files, contacts from Chromebook to Android or vice versa. “The Android community has long asked for a way to quickly share content with each other from their devices. So after years of development, Android is launching Nearby Share,” Google said in this blog post.

As you might be already aware, Nearby Sharing works both online and offline. To transfer data without internet, the feature uses Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) and WebRTC or peer-to-peer WiFi. You can share files, photos or links securely. Users also have the option to send or receive content anonymously.

Google has confirmed that initially select Pixel and Samsung phones will be getting Nearby Share for now. And expect more devices to be added in the coming weeks.

Google Nearby Share: What’s new?

User get three different settings for Nearby Sharing to work on their device. Users can choose to use the ‘Data‘ mode to use mobile data to transfer smaller files when required. The ‘Wi-Fi Only’ mode only uses your connection to transfer files when you’re on Wi-Fi. The last ‘Without Internet’ mode will always transfer files offline and will not need a connection to work.

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Sharing the files is simple. Once you select a single or a bunch of files in your file manager, you will see the Google Nearby Sharing button. Clicking on this button will display nearby devices that you can transfer to. When you select a device, all the other person has to do is accept.


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