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WhatsApp building file transfer like Apple's AirDrop

2024-01-22 19:07 by
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The WhatsApp instant messaging app is now reportedly testing a file sharing feature that will be similar to AirDropp for sending files to nearby people.

AirDrop is a feature that allows iPhone, iPad, and Mac owners to easily share files between devices just by bringing them close together. But the feature in testing appears to be part of the work that WhatsApp is doing to make it easier for people to do something similar across platforms for the first time.

WhatsApp's new feature is currently under development (it hasn't even reached Beta testing yet), so while we don't know when it will be available, we do have a good idea of what it will look like. For starters, users will likely need to shake their device in order to activate a request and, of course, be in close proximity to the other person. The recipient then needs to open WhatsApp and also shake their device to see and accept the share request. It's unclear how close the pair will need to be, but AirDrop has a range of about 30 feet for context.

WhatsApp's security measures extend to sharing as files (likely to be mostly photos and videos) will be end-to-end encrypted. The platform will also keep phone numbers private when users share files with anyone outside of their contacts. While much of this mirrors AirDrop, it's unclear if files will automatically download to a user's camera roll or work with Bluetooth alone. Currently, WhatsApp allows for 100 photos to be sent at one time over regular messaging, so we'll have to wait and see how this feature differs.

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