What you need to know
- Google has finally started rolling out the Nearby Share feature to Android devices.
- With Nearby Share, you can easily share files, links, pictures, and more with other Android users.
- The Nearby Share platform is only compatible with devices running Android 6.0 or higher.
Google's highly-anticipated AirDrop rival, called Nearby Share, is finally rolling out to Android users today. The feature, which has been in development for years, allows users to quickly and easily share files, links, photos, and more with each other.
The Nearby Share platform enables you to share content both online and offline with devices that are in your proximity. After you tap on the phone you want to share content with, the recipient will be notified and provided with the option to either accept or decline the file. Nearby Share uses various protocols to share files with other devices, including Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy, WebRTC, and peer-to-peer WiFi.
Google says it built Nearby Share with privacy at its core, which is why it allows users to share and receive files without exchanging contact information.. You can choose to remain "hidden" to everyone or be visible only to "some contacts" or "all contacts." The privacy settings can be adjust from your phone's Quick Settings.
Select Google Pixel and Samsung Galaxy phones will be the first to receive Nearly Share starting today. Over the next few weeks, however, Nearby Share will roll out to more Android smartphones.
In the coming months, Nearby Share is expected to become compatible with Chromebooks as well, which means users will be able to seamlessly share files between an Android phone and a Chromebook, and vice versa. As revealed by a report last week, Google is also working on adding Nearby Share support to its Chrome browser on Windows.
Sign up for Black Friday email alerts!
Get the hottest deals available in your inbox plus news, reviews, opinion, analysis and more from the Android Central team.