Nearby Share, Android’s answer to AirDrop

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We are on September 8, 2022, artificial intelligences are evolving at a fascinating speed, technology has already become a fundamental element of our lives, the human being finally has plans to return to the Moon (and eventually to Mars too). ), we have managed to teleport photons, a space telescope is taking us millions of years in the past and cars practically drive themselves. It seems that we are in the future… but when we want to share a file between two devices, in the end we have to send it by mail. Something is wrong, right?

In this regard, it is indisputable that Apple is way, way ahead of the competition, thanks to AirDrop. It is true that, in its first version, the implementation of AirDrop for macOS (then MacOS X) was incompatible with that of iOS, so this protocol could only be used to make direct transfers between devices of the same type, not between a PC and an iPhone, for example. However, as of 2014, with the arrival of Mac OS Yosemite, the long-awaited unification took place and, since then, it is now possible to transfer files directly between Apple devices, whatever their type.

It has always caught my attention, as an Apple user, that Google did not move in that same direction and, in response, enable a similar system for the Android + ChromeOS ecosystem. Even more cool would be if Windows was also included (something you could do via Google Chrome) in the equation, but I understand that could be a second step, after the fact, once the “in-house” solution was already available for all operating systems of the Google ecosystem.

Animated demonstration of using Near Share to quickly share a photo from a user's smartphone to their nearby tablet.

And the good news is that, finally, as Google announced on its blog The Keyword, Android and ChromeOS are going to have Nearby Share, a protocol that will provide this ecosystem with functionality similar to that of AirDrop for Apple.

«Near Share lets you easily and securely share files between nearby Android phones, tablets and Chromebooks, whether it’s photos or videos or even entire folders. In the coming weeks, you’ll be able to use Near Share to effortlessly transfer files across your own devices. Simply select Android devices that are signed in to your Google account from the sharing menu to quickly share files with each other. And once you’ve opted in, transfers between the devices you own are automatically accepted, even if your screen is off.»

So it seems that Android users and Chromebooks they will only have to wait a few weeks to start sharing files in a direct, fast and, above all, very comfortable way. And wouldn’t a standardized protocol, compatible with all major PC and device operating systems, be ideal? It would be, of course, but today it seems less likely than a bridge connecting Valencia with Mallorca.

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Brian Adam
Professional Blogger, V logger, traveler and explorer of new horizons.