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Android's upcoming AirDrop-like Nearby Sharing feature pops up in developer video

The wait for an Android Beam successor may finally be coming to a close. One of Google's developer-oriented videos for Android 11, published to YouTube today, clearly shows a "nearby" option in the share sheet. Though we're not familiar with the new icon, that name and its location in the sharing menu seem clearly related to the Nearby Sharing feature we've been anticipating for the last year.

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Google shuts down Nearby Notifications due to too much spam

Google's Nearby API has been available for years and had simplified a lot of close communication between devices, but you'll probably have forgotten about it unless you've ran across its notifications. In Lebanon, some malls and stores use beacons to broadcast notifications to passersby, and so far, the situation has been more or less tolerable. However, it seems some places were abusing the API to bombard users with spam, and so the Nearby Notifications feature is being shut down.

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Facebook is testing a map view for its Nearby Friends feature

It's easy to forget lately, but Facebook was built around the concept of staying connected to your real-life friends and family. Some features still help you do that. For example, Nearby Friends, which lets you know approximately where friends in your general area are. Now, Facebook is working on a logical extension of that idea: a map that plots the rough locations of friends in your area.

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Google may bring proximity-based Nearby API to Chromebooks

Last year, Google released v2.0 of its "Nearby Connections" API, which allows for your gadgets to communicate with other devices in close proximity via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. It was a part of the overall "Nearby" package, which also includes a few other systems for more specific applications, including messaging and notifications. According to a pair of commits recently spotted by the folks at XDA Developers, these Nearby APIs may be coming to Chromebooks. 

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Google Photos v2.8 rearranges Albums and Device Folders, prepares for Nearby sharing and Auto-stories [APK Teardown + Download]

The latest release of Google Photos hit today and it brings a few visual adjustments to a couple of the screens we visit most often. The pages for Albums and Device folders have been rearranged a bit to pack more things on the screen at once. The teardown also reveals upcoming support for easier photo sharing through Nearby and a new creation tool for mashing up your pictures and video.

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Google Play Services v9.6 adds Nearby quick settings tile

There's a new version of Google Play Services rolling out, but isn't there always? Sometimes there are notable new features, and other times not. This time, the updated version includes a nifty extra for Nougat users in the form of a new quick settings tile for Nearby.

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Google Play Services v9.2 Adds Support For All Of The New Nearby Capabilities, And Likely Includes Peer-To-Peer File Transfer [APK Download + Teardown]

Google dropped the news last week that Nearby was about to get a whole lot more interesting. With the use of Bluetooth and a special blend of tricks collectively known as Location Services, Google will enable Android devices to learn about all manner of things in close proximity, whether they be Eddystone beacons, Chromecasts, or even Android Wear watches waiting to be set up. In the announcement, it was mentioned that an update to Google Play services would be rolling out shortly that adds support for all of these new features, and this is the one. While most of the features have already been disclosed, there's one in the teardown that wasn't mentioned.

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Google Extends The Nearby API: Beacons, Physical Web, Cast And Wear Setup, And Plenty Of Contextual Notifications

When the Nearby API started rolling out to Google Play Services in July of last year, it had a lot of potential and promise. It made it so devices could talk to each other based only on their proximity and regardless of whether or not they were on the same WiFi network (in certain applications) or paired via Bluetooth. That's why we've often said it's the genius feature no one is using.

But Nearby in its original form required a lot of involvement from the user. The few apps that implemented the API only used it in specific screens, had to ask for a permission to activate it, and had to show a notification whenever Nearby was on and looking for other devices.

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Google Play Services v9.0 SDK Adds Video Recording API And Improves APIs For Nearby, Ads, And Player Stats


Radon Uses Google's Nearby API To Easily Share Links To Other Devices

Google's Nearby API is one of the coolest things developers aren't using. I mean, they are, but not as often as I had hoped. Radon is a new sharing app based on Nearby, and it's pretty cool. Just share something to Radon, and it will search for target devices in close proximity with WiFi, Bluetooth, and ultrasonic pulses.

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