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What is Samsung Quick connect on the Galaxy S6, and what can it do?

Whether you're familiar with Quick connect only because your carrier has decided to plant it permanently in your notification shade or because you've gone looking for it, we won't blame you if you don't know what it actually does. This semi-ambiguous utility has been present on the past few generations of Samsung devices, and it's an all-in-one app to display content from your phone to devices that support protocols like WIfi Direct and Miracast.

And while you may not have given it a second glance before, Quick connect is one built-in utility you might actually want to use — let us explain how it works.

What is Quick connect and where do I find it?

Quick connect

Depending on where you got your Galaxy S6 from, you'll find Quick connect in one of three places. On a majority of GS6 models you'll find a big Quick connect button in the notification shade every time you pull it down, but if it's not there (consider yourself lucky) you'll find it in the quick settings area by tapping "edit" at the top of the notification shade and toggling or moving it. You'll also see Quick connect as an option in the share menu when sharing photos, video or audio.

In any case you'll launch an extremely simple Quick connect interface that will start by telling you roughly what it's capable of doing and then ask you whether you want your phone to always be visible or just when the app is turned on — we recommend you choose the latter. That's it, there isn't anything else to configure ... now you can see why this is sort of confusing.

How do I use it, and do I actually want to?

Quick Connect

Technically speaking, Quick connect is an app that lets you connect your phone to a variety of devices over Wifi that support multiple protocols — including Wifi Direct and Miracast — to display photos, video or audio. That's actually really great, because when you fire up Quick connect you're likely to see a list of popular home entertainment gear that can connect — like the Xbox One, Chromecast, smart TVs, Miracast dongles and set top boxes. If you have another modern Samsung phone or tablet, you can also use Quick connect to wirelessly send pictures, videos, audio, calendar events, locations, contacts and files between them.

Somewhat surprisingly, Samsung doesn't even prioritize its own devices in Quick connect — you can choose whatever device works best for you. Simply open up Quick connect and choose where you want to share — you'll then be able to choose from pictures, videos or audio stored on the device to send. You can select just one item or several, and while there's no slideshow-style presentation you can choose to scroll through them at your own pace. You can hit the home button and use the device for other things while the devices are still connected — just tap the persistent notification to go back to Quick connect.

Chances are you have at least one device capable of receiving from your Galaxy S6 via Quick connect and didn't even know it — and now that you know how simple (and useful) it is maybe you'll give it a shot.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

45 Comments
  • Thanks for the write up! Posted via the Android Central App
  • I love this feature.
    And it works well. Rooted LG G2 Rooted GSIII
    Stock Galaxy Note 4
    (The Sprint Lover)
  • Maybe if they actually told you what it was.... I was looking at this on my S5 Active the other day, and was like, "What the heck is this for?" And of course, there was little info to go by...
  • But I'd happily replace that button for a Data Toggle anyway, not that they'll ever give us that back. I had a widget, but they killed widget permissions for settings in the last update.
  • What would a data toggle do? Just turn it on off? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yes. You can turn Sync on and off, but that can still let stuff run in the background. The only reason I can see to take that away, is that they want you to always be connected. They can ad track you better, and your carrier is more likely to sell you a higher plan. So they'll probably never give it back. I used it all the time on my GS3. And I briefly had an LG G3 that still had that.
  • Wow. That's a little paranoid. What is the basic benefit of a smartphone versus a regular mobile phone? Connectivity. Generally speaking, it's assumed that if you own a smartphone, it's with the intend of being connected. So anything but data connection toggle is essentially more useful than the data toggle. Location doesn't need data connection. System can pool your location and upload the next time you're connected.
    More ads? I've never seen any spontaneous ad showing on my phone except via 3rd party apps that I installed myself.
    Higher plans? I'm a pretty heavy user and I can tell you one thing: Data consumed in the background is NEGLIGIBLE compared to the data consumed through active use of your phone. So no, it doesn't help the carrier sell you "higher plans" to setup the phone so turning off data is not as easy as calling a feature to cast your content. Actually, their is a chance that the majority of smartphone users NEVER turn their data off. And should this switch be there, they'd wonder why it's here wasting space that should be used for another toggle.
  • it was a simple solution to noisy notifications at night for emails. It only turned off email sync, leaving texts and phone notifications on. I used it nightly
  • I have had apps burn through data in the background before, though yes, it is usually negligible. But I've had apps that after an update, will for whatever reason, start burning through background data. From what I'm seeing from others, other carriers Samsung phones have the data toggle, why doesn't mine? And it's looking like lots of other people used that toggle, so you can hardly say "the majority" of people don't turn it off. Not everyone is you, Android is supposed to be about customization, seems like they're taking some of that away with every update.
  • I have a mobile data on my Verizon s6 edge. Your carrier probably just got rid of it. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I have a mobile data toggle on my s6 on verizon as well
  • You should turn off all the features of your phone. Then you'll be safe. In fact, how about you just turn off the phone entirely? You can just look at it, sitting there, all pretty and turned off. Then you'll know you're safe. Posted via the Android Central App
  • That sounds like a useful solution. Your so smart, thanks for the help!
  • *You're
    Can't believe I missed that...
  • Just turns mobile data on and off. Not that many people want or need that...
  • Yeah, but some people did. Why take it away, if not for the reasons I mention above? It's BS.
  • More people want TouchWiz, yet people are also crying for it to be removed. It's not BS. You are not special.
  • Because it's a stupid waste of space. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Tin foil hat Posted via the Android Central App
  • I do it all the time. If I know I will not need my phone for a hour or two saves a lot of battery, especially if I'm in a area with a bad connection. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I have to agree. I work in a server room way more than I should but reception on any phones stink in that environment. Switching data off there is a big saver... So is forgetting to turn it back on is an issue but oh well Posted via the Android Central App
  • Why not Airplane mode it?
  • Because you still want to be reachable? :D
  • Yeah that's about right. My Verizon phone rings but I have to call them back. Sprint is about every other call that goes to voice-mail rings. T-Mobile never rings. Going to airplane mode would kill all of it Posted via the Android Central App
  • I use a my data toggle every time I stream video, to ensure that of it drops WiFi connection, it doesn't fall back to LTE. This IS something that's happened to me a few times, and it sucked up so much of my data plan it was ridiculous. So yes, a data toggle is important.
  • hmmmm i have never had that happen at my house.....maybe because i have a very good router?
  • Doesn't mean that your internet provider won't have an issue. That happened to us once, forgot all about that. There was a problem with the equipment on a pole once, and it dropped out. My wife is home with my son during the day. She ended up burning through our data allotment in one day, had to adjust my plan for that month.
  • For real the stock version works even with super old devices. It's like Bluetooth but advanced. On lasted update it broke everything . Dosnt work right . Well I run 5.0 with stock quick connect that I didn't been using alot. Till android 6.0.1 come to my country. Till them I would stay with the older version. And the stick version super light.. when I get 6.0.1 I guess some time soon . Then It would be updated . Till then no thank you. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I use quickconnect pretty often when transferring files between my GN4 and GTS8.4. Files are transferred over wifi direct and it's really fast too! Posted via the Android Central App
  • I saw quick connect on my S5 and maybe on my S3 (can't remember). I never used it because it never showed my xbox 360 or Chromecast as a device I could use. I also don't have a Samsung smart TV. So when I wanted to stream movies from my phone to my Chromecast or xbox, I was left with very few apps that rarely worked. Then I got the S6 and was very surprised to see my Chromecast appear. I immediately uninstalled those "rarely working" apps and never looked back
  • Thanks for the info. Must check if my S6 edge will connect to my Volvo's Sensus Connect.
  • I don't have that showing up on my S6 Posted via the Android Central App
  • Did not know it supported both Chromecast and Xbox One, excellent thanks!
  • Is this like screen mirroring? I use SM to connect with the Samsung Allcast but SM does not seem to work with the built-in screencast function of Plex.
  • Samsung has a separate feature for screen mirroring that isn't nearly as universal as Quick connect.
  • This is nice. Too bad I already paid for the Pro Version of SuperBeam.
    But still very nice. Rooted Galaxy S III Stock Galaxy Note 4
    Rooted LG G2
    (The Sprint Lover)
  • So in a nutshell this is all-cast adjacent?
  • Somewhat, but just not as robust.
  • Slick. Thanks for the info. My LAN has a lot of stuff.
  • It's a pretty decent feature. I don't use it often, but it will connect to my samsung 4k tv. Now what would be really cool, is if someone could figure out a way for it to connect to apple airplay capable devices (macbook pro and/or iPad). I'm sure the technology is very similar. Being a user/lover of both platforms comes with it's drawbacks ;p
  • So could I use this to watch amazon videos on my TV through a chromecast by using the instant video app on my S6? Posted via Android Central App
  • No, Quick connect is not a screen mirroring system.
  • Perfect timing with this article. I was playing around with Quick connect yesterday but couldn't actually figure out what is was for.
  • Is the PS/3 supported?
  • Will it transfer file with same speed to non-Samsung phone also?