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Android users can now share apps instantly using the Nearby Share feature in the latest version of the Google Play Store.
Recently, Google has added a number of quite useful functions to the Android platform. Near Share, a Bluetooth service that allows you to easily share files and other bits of information with nearby Android devices, is one such feature.
The Google Play Store has recently been updated to allow users to share applications with people in their immediate vicinity. Suppose you have an application that you think needs a user. Instead of the user searching for the app in the Google Play store, locating the relevant program and then installing it, you can share it with them.
However, it is important to note that not all applications can be shared in this way. Apps you paid for or sideloaded for, for example, cannot be removed.
Let’s find out how this nifty feature works.
What you will need
To use Near Share for applications, you must have the latest version of the Google Play Store installed. On my Google Pixel 5, that’s version 24.0.32-21. To find out your version, open the Google Play Store app on your device, tap the hamburger menu in the upper left corner, scroll down and tap Settings, and then scroll down to the bottom of the window to find the information for the Play Store version.
Both the sender and the recipient must have the latest version of Google Play installed and must also have the Close Share function activated.
How to enable Close Share
To enable Nearby Share, open the Settings app on your Android device. Scroll down and tap the Google entry. On that screen, tap Device Connections, then tap Nearby Share, and then make sure the On / Off slider is set to On.
Once the sending and receiving devices have Nearby Share enabled, you are ready to share an application.
How to share apps via Nearby Share
Open the Google Play Store on the sending device. Touch the hamburger menu directly to the left of the search bar and then touch My apps & games. At the top of this window, you should see a Share tab.
Touch the Share tab, and in the resulting window, touch the Send button.
In the resulting window, scroll through the list of installed applications and select the application you want to send via Near Share.
Once you’ve made your selection, tap the green Submit button in the upper right corner (green arrow pointing to the right). A list of available devices will appear. Select the receiving device and wait for the receiver to accept the incoming application. The recipient should open the Share tab on the Google Play Store and then tap Receive. The receiver will be presented with a pairing code that must match the senders. If the codes do not match, do not accept.
Then the receiver presses Install and the app will install.
Granted, this isn’t exactly the most efficient method of installing an app. However, when you want others to be able to do it as easy as possible, Near Share takes some of the guesswork out of the picture. This is especially true when you are trying to get a friend or colleague to install an application on their device that is not the easiest to find on the Google Play Store.
Thanks to Near Share, sharing various types of data on Android devices has become significantly easier.
Final remarks: How to share apps with Android’s Nearby Share
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