Nearby Share is an Android file sharing solution that makes it easy to share content device-to-device. You can share large files between Galaxy devices as well as some other Android phones, with Google stating that the feature will eventually roll out to all phones running Android 6.0 or later.

Since Nearby Share uses device-to-device protocols, it lets you transfer content without a cellular to Wi-Fi connection. When transferring content, Nearby Share automatically chooses the best protocol for speed and efficiency, whether it’s Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy or Wi-Fi Direct.

Nearby Share also supports ultra-wideband (UWB), a next-gen connectivity protocol featured on the Galaxy Note20 Ultra and the new Galaxy S21+ and S21 Ultra 5G. Thanks to UWB, which incorporates spatial awareness, you can just point and share. Think of UWB as continuously scanning radar that can lock onto an object, glean its location and communicate with it.

Shop special offers

Find out about offers on the latest Samsung technology.

see deals

Speak to a solutions expert

Get expert advice from a solutions consultant.

Talk to an expert

Nearby Share allows Samsung Galaxy users to share content with other Android devices nearby instead of emailing or texting them. While you can’t blast files to everyone nearby, you can share with anyone in your contact list. Files like videos, photos and documents will work with Nearby Share, as will links and social media posts.

How to use Nearby Share on your Galaxy smartphone

  1. Open your quick settings panel by swiping downward from the top of the screen.
  2. Long-press Nearby Share.
  3. Enable Nearby Share by toggling it on.
  4. Tap Device Visibility. Here, you can choose to share with all of your contacts or select them individually. NOTE: The person you wish to share with will also need to activate Nearby Share on their phone.
  5. Now, when you’d like to share content from an app, you can just tap the Share icon. Nearby Share will appear at the top of the Share screen.
  6. Choose the contact you’d like to share content with and point at their phone. A blue circle will appear around your contact’s name when you point at them.
  7. Tap your contact’s name to start transferring. NOTE: To receive the file, your contact must tap Accept on their device. Received files can be found in the Notifications menu.

File sharing that saves time and resources

Whether you’re in the field or in the boardroom, sharing a large file with a coworker or client doesn’t have to be a hassle. No longer do you have to fire up your email and hope the file limit isn’t exceeded, or set up sharing permissions on a file-sharing service. Nearby Share is a huge time saver, a more efficient way to share and receive content, device-to-device.

Choose the right phone for your growing business

icon of a document
White Paper

Get your free guide to matching the right smartphone with your business and employee needs. Download Now

With the point-to-share experience on the Note20 Ultra, S21+ and S21 Ultra 5G, Nearby Share also provides a first hint at the enormous potential of UWB on smart devices. In the future, UWB technology will allow us to provide automated, intuitive connections, helping to locate tagged objects, enhancing augmented reality (AR) apps, and securing vehicles, buildings and houses.

Learn more about how the new Galaxy S21 series can support your work from anywhere. For starters, here’s how to combine its features with Samsung DeX to go mobile-only.

Posts By

Mark Stone

Mark Stone is a content marketing writer with over a decade of experience covering technology, business, and cybersecurity. Earlier in his career, he was a cybersecurity analyst in the public sector. He is a regular contributor to Forbes BrandVoice and helps large tech companies with thought leadership. He lives in Kelowna, BC with his wife and two black cats.

View more posts by Mark Stone