“Nearby Share” is Android’s answer to Apple’s AirDrop. It is a universal method of sharing between devices, without the need for Wi-Fi. Close sharing also works with Chromebooks. We’ll show you how to set it up and start sharing.
Close sharing is available on Chromebooks running Chrome OS 89 and later and on devices running Android 6.0 and later. You probably already have it on your phone or tablet and all you need to do is set it up. You want to do that before we get started with the Chromebook.
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Set up close sharing on a Chromebook
First, open the settings on your Chromebook. To do this, click the clock on your Chromebook̵
In the Settings menu, go to the ‘Connected devices’ tab in the sidebar.
Then, if the feature is available on your Chromebook, “Nearby Share” will appear here. Click “Set Up” to get started.
First give your device a name and click “Next”. Here’s what you and others will see when you search for nearby devices.
The next step is to decide who can share with you. You can choose from three visibility preferences:
- All contacts: All your Share Close contacts can see your device. You can see all nearby devices with Nearby Sharing open.
- Some contacts: You choose which contacts can see your device. You can see all nearby devices with Nearby Sharing open.
- Hidden: No one can see your device. You can see all nearby devices with Nearby Sharing open.
If you choose “All Contacts” or “Hidden”, no further configuration is required.
If you choose “Some Contacts”, you can go through your contact list and select people individually. Scroll through the list and enable everyone you want to show your device to.
Click “Confirm” after you’ve made your visibility choices.
We are done with the first installation! Now let’s share.
Using close sharing on a Chromebook
Close sharing works in two ways: sending and receiving. First, we’ll discuss how to send something using Near Share. This can be done from File Manager.
Click the App Launcher icon in the lower left corner to see all the apps on your Chromebook or Chromebox. From there, open the “Files” app.
Locate the file you want to share and right click on it.
Select “Share” from the context menu.
“Nearby Share” will be one of the options. Select it.
Nearby discoverable devices are displayed here. Choose your Android phone or tablet (or Chromebook) and click Next.
Once you “Accept” on the receiving device, the transfer will begin and the file will be downloaded to your other device.
Receiving with Near Share on a Chromebook is easy. You just need to make sure your Chromebook is unlocked and other devices can see it. When a device tries to share with you, a notification asks whether you want to “Receive” or “Decline.”
If your Chromebook doesn’t appear to be showing up on other devices, you can manually enable visibility for five minutes from the Quick Settings panel.
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