Android Beam in ICS Makes Data Transfers Easy as Phone Tap

October 19, 2011
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Yesterday, Google and Samsung took the stage with their unveiling of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich running on the Galaxy Nexus, which now has powers to beam up Scotty through Near Field Communication (NFC) technology.

Called Android Beam, the new NFC-powered feature gives the Galaxy Nexus ability to transfer not only Web pages but also other information such as maps, contacts, photos, links, and even apps to another NFC-enabled device.

The demo of Android Beam showed the feature to be very quick and useful–and the name is logical, too, if one understands the underlying concept.  Android Beam uses NFC, the technology that allows simple transfers, data exchanges, and wireless communication between two NFC-capable devices that are physically near each other.

Google has found great use for NFC technology, which was created years ago.  In the Galaxy Nexus, the NFC chip and circuitry are built into the battery.  Thus, tapping or touching two Galaxy Nexus units together can allow the two devices to communicate and exchange data.

Hopefully, we’ll see more improvements and complex things down the road. We’ve seen crashes of Android Beam during the demo, but this problem could be addressed soon. As of now, beaming a particular app to another phone will link it directly to the application’s download page in the Android Market. Hopefully, things will become more reliable and we can beam even more things down the road. It’s only pre-release; it’s only the beginning of a new era for mobile devices.

What sorts of data do you foresee yourself beaming with Android Beam on your Android device?

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