What you need to know

  • Chinese smartphone makers Xiaomi, Vivo, and OPPO have come together to create a cross-brand file transfer system.
  • The solution will allow consumers to transfer files between their phones with speeds of up to 20MB/s.
  • It is highly likely that some more Android OEMs will join the alliance in the future.

Popular Chinese brands Xiaomi, Vivo, and OPPO today announced a new cross-brand file transmission alliance, which aims to deliver a better file transfer experience to users. In many ways, the peer-to-peer protocol is expected to be quite similar to Apple's AirDrop.

As per a WeChat post by Xiaomi, the protocol delivers transfer speeds of up to 20MB/s and uses Bluetooth to pair devices. No third-party app will be required to use the cross-brand file transfer protocol.

While the file transfer service will initially be limited to Xiaomi, Vivo, and OPPO smartphones, the WeChat post says other smartphone makers are welcome to join the alliance to create a more efficient experience for users. A beta version of the service is expected to be rolled out by the end of August.

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In 2011, Google tried bringing AirDrop-like file transfers to Android with the Android Beam feature, which used NFC to pair devices. The feature will finally be replaced with 'Fast Share' in Android Q. 'Fast Share' will allow Android users to share images, URLs, text snippets, and more with nearby devices without internet.

As noted by The Verge, Fast Share will be a Google Play Service feature, which means it will not be compatible with smartphones sold in China. This is probably why Xiaomi, OPPO, and Vivo decided to come together to create a similar feature for users in China.

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