Skip to main content

Best AirDrop alternatives for Windows

Apple's excellent file-transfer software is unfortunately not compatible with Windows. Luckily there are several alternatives that do a great job fulfilling your needs when it comes to transferring files. Read on to discover (in no particular order) the best AirDrop alternatives.

Zapya

Zapya on Windows

The self-proclaimed "fastest file transfer tool," Zapya will transfer your files across multiple platforms at speeds up to 10 megabytes per second. All files are transmitted wirelessly using your device's own Wi-Fi tethering or hotspot ability to connect to other devices. Don't fret; your mobile data will not be used. There is no size limit for files you want to transfer. Expect to wait longer for large files.

Connecting devices is as easy as downloading the software and making each device discoverable. With a few clicks a connection should happen. Zapya will also transfer data from old smartphones to new smartphones, and will play music or video files directly.

Zapya is free across all platforms. This is great for people who have several devices from different makers, as some software requires a re-purchase for, say, Windows when you've already purchased the software for OSX.

Xender

Xender is a free app available for Windows 10 Mobile, Android, and iOS. Easy to use (Xender claims to be easier than AirDrop), Xender's fault is that it does not support a Windows client without downloading and installing on your PC third-party software that emulates mobile software.

There is, however, a way to transfer files from your smartphone to your PC. Xender has a Connect PC mode that makes your mobile device discoverable. This method requires more steps, but essentially gets the job done.

Xender connects your devices using Wi-Fi utility and will not use any mobile data while transferring. You can choose pre-transmission where you want the file to be sent: Phone Storage or SD Card Storage. There is no size limit to the files you'd like to transfer.

Xender is free across all supported platforms.

SHAREit

SHAREit on Windows

Lenovo's transfer software SHAREit{.nofollow} is a simple, streamlined piece of software. Transfer files using your device's Wi-Fi function while avoiding any data charges. There is no limit to how big of a file you can transfer, and transfer speed is comparable to other software in this list.

Connecting devices is simple. To connect a mobile device and a PC, scan a QR code. The devices will connect and you can immediately begin transferring files.

A few features set SHAREit apart from other transfer software. Control PowerPoint with your mobile device, remote view from your mobile device files on your PC, or stream video from your mobile device to your PC.

SHAREit is available for free{.nofollow} and works on Windows, Windows Mobile, Android, iOS, and OSX.

Filedrop

The nicest thing about Filedrop? An extremely simple user interface. Just drag your file into the Filedrop window and it appears on your other connected devices.

An important note: Filedrop is not yet available for Windows Phone, although the developers claim to be working on it.

Connecting devices (other than Windows Phone) is easy. They should be automatically detected when in vicinity, but there is a fail-safe code entry system. Type in your 4-digit code and you can immediately begin transferring files.

If you have Filedrop's website open on your PC and the app open on your mobile device, the two should pair. Neat if you want to transfer files without downloading software.

I did find, however, that transfer speeds using Filedrop were relatively slow. If you want to transfer small files without any hassle, try Filedrop. If you're transferring less but larger files, try some of the other software featuring higher transfer speed.

Filedrop is available for free on all supported platforms.

Snapdrop

Snapdrop is strictly a web browser based file transfer utility. Open on both devices and in your browser Snapdrop, then simply drag and drop files to transfer. You will be prompted with an Accept or Ignore transfer on the receiving device.

If you're concerned about privacy, Snapdrop does not store any files on any servers. It uses P2P connections to transfer files.

Unfortunately Snapdrop can be unreliable. Transfer speeds sometimes drop very low, and you cannot transfer more than one file at a time. For quick, convenient transfers without downloading software, Snapdrop works great.

Note that Snapdrop uses WebRTC and is not compatible with Safari and Internet Explorer.

Your preference?

Let us know below what you use as an alternative to AirDrop!

Cale Hunt
Cale Hunt

Cale Hunt is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on laptop reviews, news, and accessory coverage. He's been reviewing laptops and accessories full time since 2016, with hundreds of reviews published for Windows Central. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user, and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.

56 Comments
  • Share it....universal windows 10 app....big reason to support them...its a great app
  • What happened to the link for the apps, you used to be productive, now blaah
  • Shareit and xender are just flops on my windows 10 mobile.... Shareit has refused to launch and Xender will just freeze after connecting. Makay Chapulets | MTN Nigeria CCR
    Posted from my Lumia 640XL running Windows 10.
  • Went through the list and decided ShareIt was the winner since it also supports PC.
  • Then you'll also love Feem, since it works on PC, just like ShareIt. Feem even works on Mac and Linux :)
  • Which is the "real" official Lenovo version? This Share it at version 1.1.1.0 or Share.it at version 1.7
  • Whichever one the desktop app wants you to install
  • Microsoft should implement wifi sharing in OneDrive
  • Do any of them use NFC to pair the devices (like 2 phones together)? Posted via Universal Windows App on W10
  • More people using zapia and xender . Zapia is better right now for windows phone
  • Another good option is Feem Wi-Fi.
    Works great on all platforms. Windows Desktop and Windows Mobile.
    Has higher ratings than the extremely slow and unreliable Xender on Windows Mobile.
    The developers of Feem claim they will launch a new UI soon with support for WiFI direct on w10m. Zapya too is really good.
    I use ShareIt, Zapya and Feem.
  • Feem v4. Another great app.
  • I don't use and have never used any of them, but after reading this Shareit seems to be the coolest. L950
  • I just tried SHAREit. It works very well.
  • I kind of like this type of articles
  • Dukto is my favorite.
  • I'm using air transfery, its nice and easy, and put the music in the music folder
  • Well does anyone of the app opens the hotspot itself?
  • Zapya do
  • For an unknown security reason all these app's function are limited on windows phone. Its really hard to share with these apps on windows platform for a novice user. No automatic vpn....pls make these things simple.
  • use Zapya, it does
  • You forgot SendAnywhere.
  • I've been using send anywhere but these are great alternatives
  • I'm using windows commander (nowadays Total Commander) since '99; it has same option on mobile devices called WiFi sharing, cross-platform and free
  • Because the UWP app of SHAREit doesn't work well with the Android version, I've started to use Zapya. UWP app is already available.
  • yes, its great
  • "AirDrop"? Really? Surely Apple's smashing commercial success is not based on their ability to come up with names. This is an even dumber name than "FaceTime".
  • I would argue that all these apps are actually better than AirDrop, simply because (I assume) they work. Most of the times when I tried to use AirDrop back when I had an iPhone, it just wouldn't work. People didn't pop up in the UI or it couldn't connect. I'm no hater of Apple products, just saying :)
  • I remember when you used to just go onto any phone and choose to send by Bluetooth :-p
  • I used Infrared :p
  • lol, I remember infrared on my old Nokias now you mention it. As nostalgic as those days were, with the first ever camera attachments we are way better off now :D
  • I would just email (back in the WM 5 days). Can you do attachments yet in W10M? Sigh...
  • This.
  • Back in the days when you cant bluetooth files to an iPhone.. Huh huh !!
  • Is there any way to share apps???
  • "...excellent file-transfer software..." Actually, it isn't, slow on discovering devices, sometimes not found (when searching lower-end devices), etc. - a user of that 'excellent' file-transfer software (I also use ShareIt, and it's great)
  • What if you need to transfer folders? I don't want to zip and unzip like crazy. Does any of these support sending folders keeping the structure, like Windows shares do?
  • Zapya is the best for me
  • You lost me with "Apple's excellent..."
  • Flick works very well, although just recently on the latest mobile build, images get buggered.
    Anyone else have that issue, or even use flick?;)
  • Shareit has several problems in windows 10 mobile even they built for windows 10 eg:- sometime shareit crash when we open, it shows file completed sending but it not, searching problem, it takes too long to respond , . I use zapya is best for tramsferring. I think making windows app is difficult than android app because of limitation in windows os android is freeware easy to use both developer and user. Hope shareit will improve his strategy or use zapya in meantime
  • None of them supports Windows Mobile Hotspot connectivity... I guess..
  • keep guessing .. use Zapya it create inside the app
  • The instructions in Zapya say, works on Hotspot created by an Android handset only..
  • Why not you try yourself instead of telling story here ? Huh ?
  • Thats whats mentioned on their official Windows Store listing.. Ru Zapya's marketing executive or something?? Story my a$$...
  • Lulx why should be I? I'm telling what, what the app does. Don't know why they didn't update the description. But if you try the app follow this steps. Turn WiFi on > Open Zapya > click to create group from bottom > click on create WiFi group .. Now others can join in this group ... WiFi Direct in w10m is API based that's why the thing is bit complicated (due to security reasons).
  • Initially thought it was about AirBnB.
  • Zapya is the best it can create hotspot inside the app
  • Feem also creates a hotspot inside the app. Feem and Zapya are the best of the best on UWP. Highly recommended.
  • I`ve been using shareiT for a couple of weeks and it works very well for me.. SKYVIN surfaced pro 4
  • LOL, I don't understand exactly what special about it. All of those services seem to be available many years ago. That's a tang that they slap a cool aid label on it.
    Summary: airdrop is a peer-to-peer network that allow streaming.
    Seriously I think I'm missing something, once apple come out with air(wi)-fi sense, don't forget to drink the cool aid
  • I recently bought an iPhone 6S and I'm asking, how to use AirDrop with my iPhone 6S and my pc with Win10 ? Is there an option how to do that or is it forbiden for Windows users?
  • Sunshine is a good one you are missing here! The instant sharing between any devices without downloading is amazing. You can instantly play a 2 hour movie between devices without downloading.  It's not available for Windows phone though, but it works with Windows PC, iOS and Android.
  • No mention of Feem Wi-Fi ? I've been a fan for more than 2 years now, and it blows ShareIt and Xender any time, on any platform. I particularly like the resumable file transfers and the excellent UWP Feem provides. It even comes with Wi-Fi Direct on UWP.  Might not be as popular as ShareIt, but I don't care about popularity, i care only about what works. And to transfer files between my Lumia and my PC, only Zapya and Feem work well enough. Enough said.
  • The best Airdrop alternative on Windows is Feem. This list needs to be updated.