Android USB OTG flash drives
One of the more common things people need to do is transfer files from their mobile device or tablet to their desktop. Sometimes it’s a photo, sometimes it’s a song, and many other times it’s some sort of document, presentation, or other file that needs transferred. There are actually quite a few ways to transfer files from Android to PC (and back again) and we’ll take a look at them here.

airdroid best Android apps to transfer files from Android to PCAirDroid

[Price: Free]
AirDroid is one of the most popular ways to access your Android device from your PC. With it you can do things like send/receive SMS messages, see notifications, and they’re currently testing out ways to control Android and use apps like WhatsApp, WeChat, etc but that feature requires root. There are also plenty of other features. Of course, you can also send files to your PC from Android and vice versa and you don’t have to connect your device to any specific network to do it. It’s a great way to put your Android device on your computer.

google drive best apps to transfer files from android to pcCloud Storage (Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive,, etc)

[Price: Varies]
One of the most popular ways to deal with files is to put them in cloud storage. Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive,, and many other cloud storage companies let you sync your device to the cloud and also have integration with PC. Thus, you can send files to the cloud then access them in your web browser or download them to your PC for later use. Then you can upload stuff to your cloud storage from your PC and access them on your Android device. Uploads can take some time, depending on your Internet speed, but it’s a great way to not only transfer, but store files in a place where everyone can see them. Check out this article for the best cloud storage apps!

pushbullet best android apps to transfer files from android to pcPushbullet

[Price: Free / $4.99 per month / $39.99 per year]
In the space of apps that connect PCs to Android devices, Pushbullet is right up there with AirDroid as one that is considered “among the best”. It does the SMS send/receive from PC along with stuff like copying a link from Android and pasting it on PC, check notifications, and file transfers. Like AirDroid, your device connects to your PC regardless of what data network its on so you can transfer files and check messages from anywhere which is nice and the developers have been working hard to create a clean cut and efficient interface as well. There’s also a Chrome extension for easier use. It’s free to use many of the features, but obtaining all of them will run you about $40/year.

solid explorer best apps to transfer files from android to pcSolid Explorer

[Price: Free / $2.99]
Solid Explorer has grown up quite a bit in a short time and is now among the best file manager apps available right now. On top of being a top notch experience for browsing your various files, it also comes with FTP, SFTP, WebDav, and SMB/CIFS baked in so you can connect to the Internet in various ways and download various files. It also has cloud storage support for a variety of services which can help you navigate them fmore quickly. It also comes with foot tools, Chromecast support, and a ton of other features. It’s free to try as a trial, but eventually you’ll have to fork out the $2.99 to use the full version.

sync best Android apps to transfer files from Android to PCSync by BitTorrent

[Price: Free]
Sync by BitTorrent is an application that those with security concerns should definitely read more about. Sync allows you to pair your device with a computer without using the cloud or anything like that so you can transfer files between your devices directly. It has some decent features, including automatic camera backup, universal file type support, and the biggest feature is that it connects directly to your computer with no middle man. You can transfer as many files as your computer hard drive will hold and essentially turns your computer or laptop into your own, personal cloud storage server. It’s completely free to use, so check it out!

See also:

The best Android apps!

May 1, 2017

Non-app ways to transfer files

If apps aren’t your deal, there are still some other ways to transfer files from your PC to Android and vice versa.

  • Use Bluetooth – If your laptop has a Bluetooth module or if you have a Bluetooth dongle for your desktop or laptop, you can pair your device with your computer using Bluetooth and send files that way. Do be warned, the transfer rates are very slow and you’ll probably only want to do this with small text files, pictures, or documents. You probably don’t want to use this for stuff like large videos or lots of files at once.
  • USB On-The-Go – USB OTG cables allow you to connect your device to USB devices such as mice, keyboards, and external hard drives. That also includes flash drives. You can use the cable to transfer documents to your flash drive or external hard drive or off of those things on to your Android device. They’re also relatively cheap on sites like Amazon and eBay.
  • Share to email – This only works with small files like photos or documents, but you can send most types of files over email. There is a size limit for most services (usually around 20MB), but that’s more than enough for something like a simple PDF file, a document, or even some music files. It’s not optimal but it’s easy and everyone has email.

best Android apps to transfer files from Android to PC

Related best app lists:

If we missed any of the best methods or apps to transfer files from Android to PC, tell us about them in the comments! This is an update of a formerly written article, so check the comments for some suggestions from our readers! To see our complete list of best app lists, click here.

Joe Hindy
Hi everyone! I'm Joe Hindy the Android Authority app guy!
  • styne20

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  • lalala

    i just wanna know which file explorer allows file transfer on android 5.0 and above with no root.

    • jirokanz

      None except the built in file explorer. eg, for Sony phones, File Commander

    • Robert

      try Dukto , not a full file explorer but full transfer

  • jirokanz

    ES File Explorer. Say no more.

  • Melvin Nacario

    I’m surprised why Snappea isn’t listed here!

  • I have used Airdroid, Pushbullet and other manual means to transfer stuff over in the past but believe that this is an area where a huge improvement is required to give the end-user an ultimate solution for mobile and wireless connectivity and file transfer. I have found all the wireless solutions to be buggy and not very stable (including Airdroid) although Airdroid sits on top of the list in comparison to others.

  • Nihar Gorla

    If its just transferring files then i would say SHAREit is the best! You don’t even need a common WiFi nor a USB connection. And its fast! superfast!

  • Horia

    I sometimes use File Expert with its ftp utility. The phone basically becomes an ftp server and you can access it via windows explorer.

  • airdorc

    If you use a Mac I’ve found that Droid NAS works pretty well, my phone is displayed as a volume in Finder. I’ve used it successfully with an old Dell Streak (2.2) & a Nexus 4 (5.1). It doesn’t have a load of bells & whistles but integrates well with OSX, sadly it won’t work with Windows.

  • Robert

    I use Dukto all the time , has an app for Windows / Android / IOS / Windows Phone and its super easy to use ( works over WIFI )

  • rashid

    ShareIt is also nice to use.

  • ChamatkariChor (Baba)

    Why is Myphonexplorer nowhere in this list? It is far more powerful, helps do backups and much more.

  • Kate Mail

    I have found just the tool to transfer large files over the internet. It is called Binfer. Forget about email to transfer large files. Do it with Binfer. It is definietly much safer option that FTP. Read more about it here:

  • Jp Ang

    why no Shareit? it’s speed is like a usb ….. wirelessly. can even transfer files from apple to android phones

    • Mohamed Sherif

      my speed over wireless n router is 1.2 mb/s , so its too slow for me

    • Lea Faletti

      share it makes the files an apk file and they don’t open. I am trying to find away to transfer stuff from G-s7edge to PC and I always get that damn apk file. I don’t understand.. at all. side sync works fast too (they use the scanner)

      • aru

        u cant both the files have different format, .apk is for android while .exe is for windows

        • Lea Faletti

          ah but you can open apk files on your computer now. it’s called an emulator. I use Leaproid VM I can download anything from google. or sync my phone and tablet and use it on my “virtual desktop” it’s amazing.

    • Chritine Odette

      I’m a professional photographer. I used to use ShareIt, but moved over to Feem.
      I now work a lot more on my Mac, and ShareIt doesn’t have a good Mac version while Feem does.

  • TwoBit Gary

    Just share the folder on pc, connect to it using ES Explorer, done. ES is also great for sending files between devices, so long as you have it on both.

  • Vaziwo

    You missed Infinit app, no file size limit, no waiting, no hassle, always works.

  • Albin

    I quite like the two third party apps DropSync and OneSync as tight and very configurable ways to link to DropBox and MS OneDrive.

  • DZRhino

    MightyText does everything and in addition you can move pics and files from phone to otherandroid devices as well as PC.

  • Diamen91

    I often send files to a conversation with myself on Telegram, to which, being multi-access and multi-platform, I can easily access from anywhere and download my files..

  • Infinit ( easy to use simple file sending, you can send large files as well. Best way to send your movies from desktop to other devices.

  • Shane Monroe

    X-Plore file manager. Handles most cloud service, FTP, LAN/Samba … and it has dual panes. There is no competition :)

  • Richard Wilson

    My phone Explorer has been around for a while but it just works with WiFi and Bluetooth and USB. It will sync, cut, copy and paste, drag and drop. You install it on your computer and a client on your phone. You do the work on your computer screen.

    • TwoBit Gary

      That’s why I like ES, no need for anything on pc just simple file sharing.

  • Robert

    Sugarsync is awesome. Using its Magic Briefcase feature I can throw a file in there and it is available on any of my devices. It even stays synced if you alter it on one device it is updated automatically and good to go on any other device.

  • Jason Stuntz

    SideSync 3.0 is an easy app to share between PC and Android. It also does a share screen of your Android device on the PC and allows you full access to apps, notifications, settings, etc. I’m surprised this app wasn’t mentioned.

  • The-Sailor-Man

    Even AppleInsider couldn’t create such “nice” article with such “nice” pictures, to make so good bashing of the GREAT OTG function that the Android devices have,

    Great job iAA . Hope you get what you were promised. Spend it with pleasure.

  • Clinton Becker

    I think a GREAT file sharing app is “mightytext”
    You don’t even have to think about SHARING photos, it sync’s as you shoot.and allows texting right from your pc.

    • Pushbullet always overshadows MightyText, but I like the latter in it’s robust functions and syncing.

  • Jordan

    Well, I find them very useful. However, they are too expensive. I think a free app like AirMore ( is more suitable for me.

  • eveeve

    Thanks for sharing, Coolmuster Android File Manager could also help, we can use it to backup almost everything from android phone to computer, and it also has some other functions, have a try!

  • esderd

    I use Android Mobile Manager to transfer files to computer. It supports files in sd card like photo, data in internal memory like sms and contacts.

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  • freddielore

    Software Data Cable (Play Store link) is also one great app to do just that, and it’s FREE. It works like 3CX DroidDesktop. Works like a charm for me. :)

  • uiloii

    Have you heard of MobiKin Assistant for Android? It seems a good third party Android file manager tool on computer. Works well and easy to use.

  • George T.

    How to install Mobizen on Android

  • gokul

    Nice app to work with try
    Brain dots for pc

  • Aravindhsriram
  • brain dots for pc

    Instructions are easy to understand

    brain dots for pc

  • Aramis Franck


    WiFi File Transfer

    de smarterDroid

    peut fonctionner avec uniquement avec un smartphone
    Android et un PC Windows, sans Internet, routeur ou autre box. Cette
    appli permet les transferts de fichiers dans les 2 sens du PC vers le
    smartphone et vice-versa via le WIFI en local. Simple, ergonomique,
    efficace, après moult recherches : la seule application capable
    d’effectuer ces émissions / réceptions de fichiers localement sans
    transiter par le Cloud ou un routeur externe.

    A recommander.

  • Gablkyt

    The most direct and simplest way to transfer a file from your PC to android phone is using the USB cable. Just use some android assistant ,then connect your PC and your Android using the cable, you can transfer files what do you want to do

  • lucas

    Well, sounds good! I always use 3-rd party tools to transfer my android phone data to my pc for backup.

  • lucas

    Well, I often use 3-rd party tool, too. Thats can be helpful some times!

  • lucas

    I use a tool to transfer from my htc to Mac, which is very nice!

  • lucas

    This one is good, have a see, the interface.

  • Sahith Krishna

    new shareit sucks bigtime..

    • Jayadev Senapathi Kota

      exactly right ..! i used to love shareit but now it sucks .. do u have a solution for that yet..?

      • Chritine Odette

        ShareIt is actually nice.
        But I moved on to Feem Wi-Fi. Maybe it might help you too.

  • SouL Prisoner

    What is this?? An article for the people living in past like a decade ago?? Offline sharing is the shit. Fuck sharing on wifi.

  • Ofmgoodd

    Some updates Android device will delete your data. So you need to do backup phone data. With Coolmuster Samsung Backup ,you can backup android data to computer easily !

  • Artie Berry

    I need some advice, please. This looks like a group that would have some expert opinions.

    I have (or will have) 80 android tablets (4. or 5.) permanently located at 80 desks in a 30′ x 40′ room. On occasion, I need to update them with files from a PC laptop via WiFi. However, I’m told I need software to accomplish the transfer of files, but I’m not sure what is required or where to find it.

    The 80 tablets would be on a LAN and would not have access to the internet. Updating all 80 at once would be ideal but updating, say, 16 or so at a time would be acceptable. Can someone direct me to appropriate software? I intend to contact the 7 providers of the “7 Best Android Apps…” mentioned by Joe Hindy in his May 15, 2015 article.

    Thank you,

    • TwoBit Gary

      Since they are all on the LAN, it’s as simple as standard file/folder sharing. Share a folder on the server, or some central PC. On the tablets install Solid explorer, or similar(don’t use ES as they are a bit shady now). In solid explorer, you can connect to the shared folder. Not sure if Android can connect to the LAN without also being on the internet, they’re not like a PC in that regards, I could be wrong. Anyway, update the files on the server and the files are updated on the tablet. I used an app that could also sync the files to the tablet so they were available off-line, can’t recall the name, but search play store for sync apps.

  • HotelQuebec

    Solid Explorer, Autosync Google Drive and One Drive cover everything I need.

  • Vijay Raghavan

    Watch the Video | The best app to share files between PC and Android(Easy, Fast and Configuration-free)–>

  • shantanu saha

    Did you use ShareAll? It’s good. My mac or iPhone doesn’t need any app to transfer data from Android.

  • Vi Chung

    no share it

  • Chritine Odette

    Great article.
    As a professional photography, I’ve tried them all. There are two great tools in your list I fear are missing: Feem and ShareIt.
    Tools like Feem, and ShareIt work without passing through the Internet, which makes them fast. Very fast.
    AirDroid is good, and has many features, but i can’t seem to send folders with it. Also, transferring multiple pictures with AirDroid without zipping them is a pain. Feem, at least for me, works better than Airdroid.
    Cloud Storage: They all have the handicap of requiring a fast internet connection, and unlimited space. I constantly transfer thousands of pictures between my Android and PC. Feem transfers those very fast, without passing through the Internet. I still use one or two cloud options for backups only.
    PushBullet: Word on the street is that they are dying. And pushbullet cannot send files with sizes greater than 25MB of data. Feem and ShareIt handle those types of files very well.
    SolidExplorer: I tried this and ES File Explorer. They are good file explorer, but don’t serve my file transfer needs. I don’t want to have to set up an ftp server on my PC just to share files. Neither do I feel the need to create SMB shares with all the access controls i’ll have to maintain. All i want to do is push, not pull files, and Feem handles that well.
    Sync By BitTorrent: Now this is one fine piece of software I actually recommend. Great for sharing folders. But bad for sharing individual files in an adhoc manner.
    Here’s my top 3 list: Feem, Sync, ShareIt.
    Hope this rather long comment helps someone having the same file transfer needs like me.

  • Chritine Odette

    The best apps to use are Feem and ShareIt. Portal by Pushbullet got uninstalled the moment i realized that file transfers only go one way… from PC to phone. Portal cannot even handle Phone to PC or Phone to Phone, or PC to PC. Feem and ShareIt handle all those cases.

  • Artjom König

    Add Pocketshare to the list.

  • The android device data transfer was a long question, i think it’s very convenient to use a mobile phone file transfer and backup app to help. Try Coolmuster Android Assistant, just few simple steps to transfer everything from your phone to computer.

  • spookym

    Haven’t tried any of these apps yet, but the problem I find with the photo transfer apps I’ve tried so far, is that they merely send copies of the images to my PC, and I’m then left with the task of deleting all the the original files. Is there an app that can actually move the files to PC, or at least have a setting to delete the originals as they’re transferred? Also, they require downloading an app to PC in order to use, which isn’t so bad if that’s all I had to do. Instead, I have to open the app on PC each time I want to transfer files, plus enter the IP address and the port number. I may as well just stick to using a cable which is just as quick or quicker!

  • pipa

    airdroid is now with payed version for surf folders. FUG THEM. Airdroid is useless now. You should not even mention it