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Who needs Android Beam? Xiaomi, OPPO, vivo join forces for file-sharing

The three companies added that they're looking for more vendors to back their file-sharing standard.

Published onAugust 19, 2019

A poster announcing Xiaomi, vivo, and OPPO's file sharing feature.

Google is working on a Fast Share local file-sharing feature for Android Q, meant to replace its Android Beam functionality. But Xiaomi, OPPO, and vivo have plans of their own, jointly announcing a local file-sharing standard that will be featured on all their phones.

The news, spotted by The Verge, was announced on the MIUI Weibo account — so what should you expect then? The feature uses Bluetooth and is capable of transfer speeds of up to 20MBs per second. Presumably it’s using Wi-Fi after initial pairing via Bluetooth, much like the Files by Google local sharing feature.

The companies say the new file-sharing standard won’t require any third-party apps, ostensibly being baked into their Android skins. Furthermore, the trio says the new feature supports a variety of file formats.

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Xiaomi, OPPO, and vivo added that they look forward to more vendors backing the standard. According to Counterpoint Research’s Q2 2019 global smartphone shipments report, the three firms account for over 24 percent of shipments in the quarter. But adding the likes of OnePlus, Realme, and industry juggernaut Huawei could make this file-sharing feature a fixture on the majority of Android phones around the world.

The feature is especially noteworthy for the Chinese market, where Google services and features are often stripped out of Android. So an integrated, cross-device file-sharing standard is arguably more important in this market.

The trio says that the feature will be available at the end of the month. Compatible phones weren’t announced, but you can likely expect their flagship devices to offer the feature down the line. There’s no word if this file-sharing standard will come to phones in the West. We’ve contacted Xiaomi and Oppo for more details and will update the article when we receive more information.

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