What is AirDrop and why should I care?

What is AirDrop and why should I care?

With iOS 7, Apple has introduced AirDrop functionality for all iPhone 5 models, the fourth-generation iPad, the iPad mini, and the fifth-generation iPod touch. AirDrop is simply a technology that allows users to quickly and easily share information between compatible iOS devices. A wide variety of information can be shared, such as: photos, contacts, web pages, notes, iTunes radio stations, and more.

Set up AirDrop

For AirDrop to work properly, you must be signed in to an iCloud account, have Bluetooth enabled on your device, and be connected to a Wi-Fi network. Additional settings options are available in the iOS 7 Control Center. To access the Control Center, swipe up from the bottom of the screen. You will see a window that provides quick access to many frequently used device settings. Bluetooth can be enabled by selecting the icon in the middle of the top row.

Tap the AirDrop button to select whether your device will be visible to Everyone, Contacts Only, or to turn the service off. Basically, this allows you some control over who can send you information. The Contacts Only setting will only accept information from people in your contacts. To receive information from someone who is not listed in your Contacts, select the Everyone setting.

Using AirDrop

When you want to send something to someone else, tap the Share button. It is in the shape of a square with an arrow pointing up.

A sharing sheet will open with several options for sharing the information. If any AirDrop recipients are available within range (around 30 feet), their icon will appear automatically. If the recipient is listed in your Contacts, their contact photo and nickname will be displayed. It may take a moment to identify if there are any AirDrop-enabled devices in the area. A recipient’s device must be active (the screen is not black) for the device to be identified.

Touch the person’s icon to send them the information. The recipient will receive a notification that you want to send them something. They have the option to accept or reject the information. If the item is accepted, a copy of the data is sent to your device and you’ll see a confirmation once the transfer is complete.

On the recipient’s device, the information opens automatically in the corresponding application. For example, if you send a link to a web page from Safari, the web page will automatically open in Safari on the recipient’s device.

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