How to use Nearby Share on Android devices

Android just introduced its version of Apple AirDrop, which lets you share content with your friends seamlessly. 

Nearby Share was introduced on Tuesday to select Google Pixel and Samsung devices with Android 6.0 and above. The new feature allows you to share files, links, pictures, and more to those nearby. 

Unlike Apple’s AirDrop, Nearby Share only allows you to share content with people in your contacts list, which protects you from getting weird photos from strangers you pass on the street. You can even choose which contacts will see your device or remain hidden to all nearby devices. 


Here’s how to use the new feature: 

  • Make sure your Bluetooth and Location are turned on 
  • Open Settings
  • Tap Google > Device Connections
  • Tap Nearby ShareTurn on

Once your sharing is turned on, you can now share content with someone nearby.

  • Open whatever you want to share, whether it’s a photo or a webpage 
  • Tap Share > Nearby Share
  • Make sure your phone and your friend’s phone are held close to each other 
  • A list of nearby devices will pop up, where you can then choose which device to send to
  • After you tap Send, you’ll get a message saying Sending and then one saying Sent to confirm 
  • If someone is trying to send you content, you’ll receive a notification on your phone where you can tap Accept 

Some things to keep in mind when using the feature is that both phones have to have Bluetooth and Location must be turned on for sharing to work. Both phones must also be within 1 foot of each other to share. 

Google said Nearby Share would soon become available to transfer between Chromebooks and Android phones. Digital Trends reached out to Google to find out when the feature would be available to more Google devices and phones. We will update this story when we hear back. 

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