Nearby Share has been available on Android for over two years. Google has now announced a significant update that simplifies and speeds up the transfer of files between user devices. Support for other platforms will be added in the future. The Mountain View company has announced other innovations in terms of productivity and accessibility.
Automatic File Sharing
Nearby Share supports sharing between Android and ChromeOS devices (smartphones and tablets). It works even without internet connectivity, using WiFi, Bluetooth, NFC, UWB, and WebRTC to send photos, documents, links, and other content. The transfer is only possible if it is approved. Now you no longer need prior permission to share files between devices of the same user, i.e., associated with the same Google account. The share will automatically be accepted, even if the screen is off. The “self-share” mode will arrive on devices with at least Android 6 in the coming weeks.
Google has also updated the Drive and Keep widgets for tablets. The Drive widget gives you quick access to Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, while the Keep widget is more prominent and displays more information. New shared experiences have been introduced for Google Meet, including playing and watching a video with up to 100 people simultaneously, taking advantage of the live sharing feature. Finally, the Mountain View company has improved the accessibility tools. The Live Transcribe & Notifications app shows a notification on your smartphone when a nearby sound is detected (such as a knock on the door or an alarm).
Soon it will be possible to record sounds (for example, those emitted by an electrical appliance) and add them to the library. It needs to be clarified why this feature has never been implemented before today. Still, it could be a security precaution. From now on, the gap is closed anyway, and soon the entire corpus of Android devices will be able to enjoy this speeded-up and simplified mode of exchange. This also has repercussions in the professional and productive fields: speed is everything to proceed quickly, and thanks to the new function, it will now be possible to enjoy much more freedom.
Google Nearby Share: Identical To Apple’s AirDrop
Google has been working on this solution for a long time. The sharing processes that existed so far were too slow, temporary, and cumbersome; with Nearby Share on Android instead, file sharing with nearby devices will be immediate, as fresh as with Apple, when you have to pass an entire photo album – for example – from iPhone to Mac.
In the quick settings of the Android software, owners of Pixel and Samsung-branded devices (as well as the Chromebook range) will see a switch that will be used to activate or deactivate the service; furthermore, it will be possible to accept incoming transfers, whether they are texts, hypertext links, images, videos, and other different file types. Google’s previous quick sharing solution was introduced in 2011 (almost ten years ago) with Ice Cream Sandwich and was already made obsolete with Android 10. Android Beam (the official name) required devices to touch with which the data was to be exchanged physically.
Returning to Nearby Share, once you click “Activate nearby sharing, ” you will see the devices ready to receive the files, with their profile picture. Users can then set the “Visibility of the device, “remaining “hidden” from most, active to all, or active only for their contacts in the list. When a user accepts the transfer, a notification will appear with the following message: “The nearby device is sharing”; remember that acceptance of sharing is essential for it to work. The photo, video, or document sent will then be available in the Download folder or copied to a text editor on the device (if you decide to share a link, for example).
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