Google and Samsung team up to deliver AirDrop alternative for Android and Windows devices

Google Pixel 7 Pro phone with Windows XP Bliss wallpaper expanded vertically
(Image credit: Ben Wilson | Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Google is changing the name of its Nearby Share app to Quick Share, meaning users will soon be able to share files from a Samsung smartphone to a Google Pixel.
  • This also applies to supported Android phones and other compatible devices like Chromebooks.
  • Quick Share app is expected to ship to Windows devices, though the timeframe for this remains unclear.

As a confessed iPhone fanboy, AirDrop is one of my favorite parts of Apple's ecosystem because it allows me to send multiple files, videos, or images to someone else in seconds. Admittedly, Google's Nearby Share and Samsung's Quick Share are equally beneficial.

But like how AirDrop is limited to iPhone users, so is Quick Share to Samsung Galaxy owners. Luckily, this is about to change. As earlier announced at CES 2024 in Las Vegas, Google is changing the name of its Nearby Share feature to Quick Share. 

Users could now share files, videos, or pictures from their Samsung to Google Pixel phones and vice versa. This also applies to compatible PCs like Chromebooks and Android phones.

Android Central's Mishael Rahman (via TechRadar) spotted that the "new" Quick Share has seemingly started rolling out to users in waves. It's worth noting that Quick Share is also rolling out to Samsung and OnePlus users, per the comments under Rahman's post on X (formerly Twitter). This could indicate it's set to ship to broad availability soon.

Sharing files using your Windows PC is about to get easier

(Image credit: Daniel Rubino)

Rahman further pointed out that the Quick Share app on Samsung devices is different from the one on Google Pixel phones with the following explanation:

"Google's Quick Share is not the same as Samsung's Quick Share, though they're now interoperable. Google's Quick Share is part of Google Play Services, while Samsung's is through its Quick Share app which is being updated to become interoperable with Nearby Share (now Quick Share) on other Android devices."

Once this change rolls out to everyone, Google is set to disable Nearby Share on Samsung devices. This is because Samsung's Quick Share is now interoperable with it. Additionally, the new Quick Share app is expected to ship to Windows PCs, though we don't have a clear timeframe for this at the moment.

As you might already be aware, Samsung updated its Quick Share app last year, adding support for Windows PCs with Intel Bluetooth/Wi-Fi released by other manufacturers. Previously, you could only use the app to share files with other Samsung laptops.

Quick Share App | See at Microsoft Store

Quick Share App | See at Microsoft Store

Samsung recently updated the application. You can now share files using Quick Share on other laptop and PC brands besides Samsung.

Kevin Okemwa

Kevin Okemwa is a seasoned tech journalist based in Nairobi, Kenya with lots of experience covering the latest trends and developments in the industry at Windows Central. With a passion for innovation and a keen eye for detail, he has written for leading publications such as OnMSFT, MakeUseOf, and Windows Report, providing insightful analysis and breaking news on everything revolving around the Microsoft ecosystem. You'll also catch him occasionally contributing at iMore about Apple and AI. While AFK and not busy following the ever-emerging trends in tech, you can find him exploring the world or listening to music.