Android update: Millions of smartphones are finally receiving this awesome iPhone feature


If you own an Android device from vivo, Oppo or Xiaomi then we’ve got good news. The Chinese trio are finally kickstarting their feverishly anticipated “Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance” that will allow for seamless file transfers between devices à la Apple AirDrop. File transfers have always been a sticking point for Android – the operating system has never had a universal file transfer system that’s as quick or effortless to use as AirDrop. Android Beam came very close but it was ousted by Google without a suitable share sheet replacement with the release of Android 10. That means all new Android phones don’t have an intuitive way to quickly transfer files within the share sheet… unless you’re willing to put up with the sometimes heinously long wait times for Bluetooth transfers of course.

vivo, Oppo and Xiaomi have taken matters into their own hands with the Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance. The feature leverages Bluetooth to pair devices and should allow for transfer speeds up to 20MB per second.

The Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance was announced back in August and now we finally know when it’ll be going live. Xiaomi has confirmed the feature is now available on all devices running Android 9 Pie or Android 10 except for the Redmi 6 Pro, Redmi 6, Redmi 6A, Redmi 7A, Redmi 7, Redmi S2, Redmi 8, Redmi 8A, Redmi Note 8 and Redmi Note 8T.

Meanwhile, all Oppo phones running Android 10 will be able to take advantage of the new Android file transfer system. At the moment Oppo’s ColourOS 7 operating system that’s based on Android 10 is only available in beta for Reno 2, Reno 10X Zoom, F11 Pro, F11 Pro Marvel’s Avengers Limited Edition and F11.

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However, the Chinese tech giant has promised the fresh functionality will be made available for its Find Series, Reno Series, R Series, F Series, A Series and K3 in due course.

Finally, vivo has said the file transfer system will be “gradually rolled out on new vivo products in different markets from February 2020”.

The Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance is a big deal, especially because the tech trio accounted for 45 percent of China’s mobile phone market share in the third quarter of 2019, according to data from Counterpoint Research.

The three Chinese firms have also expressed a deep desire to expand the new alliance. In fact, each has said it’s looking forward to “welcoming more brands to join for an expansion that is beneficial to all”, suggesting the likes of Huawei, OnePlus and more could potentially join in the future.

Announcing the launch of the Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance, Oppo said: “World-leading smartphone brands OPPO, vivo and Xiaomi (in alphabetical order) have joined forces to expand the Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance in the global market, while also welcoming more Android smartphone brands to join the movement. The Alliance will allow users to transmit files, pictures and videos without the need for an internet connection, reflecting how OPPO and its innovative operating system – ColorOS – is open to cooperate with other platforms.

“The Internet has brought a huge convenience to everyday life, and now especially with 5G on the way, people are expecting faster and even more stable connections. However, file sharing between different phone models and brands has always presented an obstacle to greater connectivity.

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“In order to tackle this pain point, and bring a smoother and more effortless sharing experience to users even with different brands of smartphones, OPPO, vivo and Xiaomi teamed up to form the Peer-to-Peer Transmission Alliance under the protocol for high-speed WiFi Direct transfer across mobile devices.”

Users of Oppo, vivo or Xiaomi smartphones won’t see any new buttons or apps appear on their phone to show the arrival of the new file transfer system. Instead it’ll be built directly into the existing sharing systems from each respective manufacturer. That means the likes of Oppo Share and Mi Share will have the added functionality embedded in.



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