Google’s Nearby Share makes it quick and easy to move files between Android and other devices, especially now that Windows support is available, but there are still uses that go under the radar, like the ability to share entire folders.
Nearby Share typically works by letting you send a file between devices by first selecting the file, and then the target device. You can also share multiple files at once through supported apps. But you can also send full system folders from Android to other devices.
This feature has been available ever since Nearby Share launched its beta app on Windows back in March of this year, but flew under the radar and is now seeing some new interest as Mishaal Rahman highlighted the feature on Twitter (or whatever Elon calls it now) this week.
You can share full folders and their contents between Android and Windows in either direction, though on Android this only works through the Files by Google app. Samsung’s files app doesn’t seem to leave the folder structure intact, rather just sending all of its contents.
When sharing a folder from my Pixel 7 Pro to my Pixel Tablet, the Nearby Share prompt shows that I’m just receiving multiple files, but when I view those files in the Files by Google app, it does show “Dashcam” as the folder they’re stored in.
But, the really useful part is that this works on Windows too. When you share a folder with a Windows machine, it shows up in File Explorer as a folder (as seen below). And you can then also share a folder with Android from Windows, and it works the same way. That’s the really useful part, at least in our opinion.
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