Finally, no need to wait for Android 11. Nine years after the arrival of AirDrop on iOS and several years after having given up Android Beam, its file exchange system between two mobile devices, Google announces that it has finally finalized Nearby Share (translated Proximity Sharing in French), its new universal service. Using Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy, WebRTC and Wi-Fi P2P, this new system allows files (light or heavy) to be sent quickly between two devices without cables and without an Internet connection. From now on, transferring a hundred photos between two Android devices is only a matter of seconds.
From Android 6.0
Nearby Share does not depend on an Android update. Google will deploy it on all smartphones equipped with the services Play store, or almost all devices on the market (excluding Huawei post-Mate 40 or Amazon Fire tablets for example). The minimum requirement is to use Android 6.0 Marshmallow.
Initially, the Google Pixel and Samsung smartphones have an exclusivity on Nearby Share. The update to Play Services incorporating this functionality will first be deployed on these devices before a global deployment.
On computer later
In its blog post, Google confirms the upcoming arrival of Nearby Share on Chromebook without saying anything on PCs and Macs. The recent arrival of an experimental client from Nearby Share in a Canary version of Chrome, however, suggests that it will soon be possible to send files from your phone to your computer through your browser. If Google wishes, nothing prevents it from deploying its service in the form of an iOS application.
With Nearby Share, Google is filling one of the major gaps in its flagship operating system. Is this enough to convince some historical iPhone users to switch?