“Sharing up closeIt is a useful feature for sharing files between Android devices. Close Up Sharing is a relatively new addition to Android as well, arriving in the middle of 2020 on a limited set of devices. With the increase in the number of devices capable of using the feature “Sharing up closeHere is your handy guide on how it works.
Nearby Share is Android’s answer to Apple’s AirDrop feature. iOS devices have always been able to transfer files wirelessly. Simply place the phones close to each other, turn on AirDrop and start transferring files. Android users have been (quite literally) begging Google to speed up the implementation of a similar feature for a long time.
Now, Google is rolling out the Close Sharing feature to Android devices running on Android 6.0 and above. Close-up sharing has been launched on Google Pixel and Samsung devices and is already rolling out on other devices. Furthermore, Android-based operating systems such as LineageOS are implementing the Close Sharing feature in their latest updates.
In fact, Android had an earlier answer to Apple’s AirDrop. The feature was known as Android Beam, which uses NFC to transfer files, contacts, and other data. However, it didn’t become quite as popular as AirDrop, and Google made the decision to revamp the technology in 2019, bringing the sharing feature closer.
Windows also has a close-up file sharing option, in case you were wondering.
How does close sharing work?
Close sharing allows you to transfer files between Android devices that are in close proximity to each other. But how does the close sharing feature work?
Close sharing creates a temporary connection between devices. The process chooses the best protocol automatically, choosing from Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy, WebRTC, or peer-to-peer Wi-Fi. The range of sharing options means you don’t need an active network connection to complete the transfer.
It opens the Nearby Sharing app on your device and makes your device visible to other users. Then you can share files and media with them (or vice versa), which requires a few extra clicks to accept or reject the incoming file. The whole process is simple, as you will see in the tutorial below.
Although Android’s Close Sharing feature is useful for small files, you will have to try other options for large files or multiple folders. Check How to Transfer Data to a New Android Phone for more tips on Android data transfers.
How to use Android Close Sharing
Let’s take a look at how to use the Close Sharing feature. You will need an Android device running at least Android 6.0. As mentioned earlier, Close Sharing was initially rolled out to Google Pixel and Samsung devices. Your Android device may not have Close Sharing yet – but it’s coming soon!
To check if your device can use the Close Sharing feature, open the Android Settings menu (usually by tapping the
) and look for a close post. If the option appears, your device should be able to use the feature. If not, you will have to wait for the update in the future.
The Nexus 6 running LineageOS 17.1 and the Samsung Galaxy S8 running Android 9.0 were used for the Close Sharing demonstration.
Open Close Up Sharing, then select employment.
Browse the file you want to share, then tap the share icon
. Locate Sharing up close.
Then a few flicks on the sides between the devices are required. The receiving device will receive a notification that someone is sharing content with them, tap the notification to make the device visible if they have not previously tapped. If asked to enable Close Sharing, Geolocation or Bluetooth, tap activation.
After switching to visible, you can Acceptance (or reject) the incoming file. If you agree, the file will be transferred fairly quickly, depending on the file size. After the transfer is complete, your built-in file manager will open, displaying the new file.
Android Close Sharing automatically chooses the best transfer protocol, but you can bypass it. For example, you can turn on the Bluetooth connection to display the Close Sharing prompt with this option.
Close Sharing on Chromebooks
Google is introducing Close Sharing to Chromebooks as well. As part of the integrated Google ecosystem, you’ll quickly and easily share files between Chromebooks and Android devices. However, the feature is not fully implemented in Chromebooks yet.
Close Sharing is currently available for the Chrome OS Beta channel, as it is hidden behind some experimental Chrome Flags. However, after turning on the different flags and installing the latest Chrome OS Beta, I’m still unable to connect my devices using Nearby Sharing.
Right now, Chromebooks with Close Sharing don’t work perfectly. But all the details suggest it will be up and running, as evidenced by Chrome Flags and the appearance of Close Sharing in Chrome OS settings.
Close sharing comes to your Android device
It won’t be long before you can use Close-Up Sharing on Android devices, and even with a Chromebook. Wireless file transfer between similar devices is a must, and it begs the question of why Google hasn’t pushed Android Beam. However, the long-awaited implementation of Close Sharing is a boon for Android users.