we’ve been hearing about Google working on an AirDrop-like file transfer feature for Android for a long time now.
Similar to AirDrop, Android’s Nearby Sharing, often referred to as “Fast Share” by Google, will enable users to wirelessly transfer files (photos, videos, links, and more) to nearby devices.
The idea is to have an in-house file-sharing system instead of relying on third-party apps such as ShareIT and Xender.
Today, we have learned that Google’s file-sharing feature may support all the popular operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Linux, and ChromeOS. According to Chrome Story, a Nearby Share Toggle has appeared on the Chrome OS Settings app in the latest builds of Chrome OS Canary.
The feature is not outright visible and needs to be enabled from chrome://flags. Moreover, switching the toggle doesn’t do anything, which means Google is still working on Fast Share.
— Dinsan (@_dinsan) June 19, 2020
But for now, the most important part is the flag’s description, which says, “Enables Nearby Sharing for sharing content between devices. – Mac, Windows, Linux, Chrome OS.” It’s clear evidence that the new Android Fast Share feature will support all platforms with Google Chrome installed.
Previously, XDA’s Mishaal Rahman tweeted a few screenshots of Nearby Sharing implementation in the Android 11 Beta 1. All of this tells us that the Android Nearby Sharing feature is about to leave the development stage and will shortly go live.
Interestingly, Google is not the only big company looking to bring a unified file-sharing system to Android. Previously, OnePlus, Realme, Black Shark, Meizu, OPPO, and Vivo joined forces with Xiaomi on its file transfer alliance, again to have an in-house AirDrop like feature.
It will be interesting to see how the two file-sharing systems will run side-by-side.