Google renames Fast Share, its upcoming version of AirDrop, to Nearby Sharing

AirDrop is an iOS (and macOS) feature that a lot of Android users are jealous of. With AirDrop, you can share files of any size between devices that are within your wireless and Bluetooth range. It allows you to send and receive files from only your contacts or have it set to receive from everyone. Google has been working on its own version for Android which was originally named Fast Share but a new report says it has gotten a new name.

According to a report by XDA Developers, Fast Share has been renamed to Nearby Sharing. The name is a perfect fit since users will be able to share files to devices near them. The renaming came about with the release of Google Play Services v20.1.03.

Nearby Sharing works by first connecting to the device you want to send a file to via Bluetooth and then sending the files via WiFi. According to screenshots of the feature in use, devices have to be unlocked, be within 1 ft of each other, and have Bluetooth and Location turned on.

There is an option to set Device Visibility, and from the screenshot, it can be set to All contacts. There is also an option to share files “Without internet”. The third image shows that Nearby Sharing will have an icon in the Quick Settings menu for easy access.

There is no info on when Nearby Sharing will be released. It has been in development since last year but didn’t arrive with Android 10. Google may decide to release it along with Android 11 later this year.

While we wait for Google to announce Nearby Sharing, OPPO (and Realme), Xiaomi, and Vivo formed the Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance to develop their own file-sharing feature. The feature will allow owners of phones from the four brands to share files with each other using Bluetooth and WiFi. The feature will be available on Vivo devices starting next month.