Wi-Fi Direct and NFC are two of the hottest new technologies in the smartphone world. The first is a standard for transferring files between two devices at blazing fast speeds over Wi-Fi while the second one is a standard that lets two devices communicate with each other simply by touching them together.
Various Android devices have started supporting these two standards lately, but the difference in implementation by various manufacturers have made it very cumbersome to transfer files using Wi-Fi Direct and / or NFC between different devices seamlessly. Samsung, for example, supports file transfer using Wi-Fi Direct in its devices, but Android natively doesn’t and so transfer of files between a Samsung and a non-Samsung device is impossible.
Meet SuperBeam, an excellent WiFi direct file transfer app for Android that uses a combination of Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct and NFC, utilizing whichever is present on the two devices, for providing super fast speeds.
The app is super simple to use. For transferring a file, all you have to do is share it from a file manager or gallery (or any other app) to SuperBeam and tap your device with the recipient’s device.
At present, Bluetooth is the most widely used option for transferring files. But there is no denying that it’s horribly slow. On average, file transfer using Wi-Fi Direct is at-least 10x faster. Hopefully, it will replace Bluetooth as the new standard soon as more devices start supporting it.
In the simplest case of all, the app first uses NFC for pairing the devices and then Wi-Fi direct for transferring files at super speeds. For devices that don’t support Wi-Fi Direct, SuperBeam uses existing Wi-Fi network or Wi-Fi tethering for file transfer. The same goes for pairing as well — the app lets the recipient scan QR codes for pairing the devices using the Camera if NFC isn’t present.
Play Store: SuperBeam (free)
Other Apps for Transferring Files using WiFi Direct and NFC in Android
SuperBeam has emerged as my favorite app for all my file transfer needs. I’ve tried several similar apps before, but each of them had issues either in dealing with NFC pairing or finding the recipient using Wi-Fi Direct, especially when the devices were from different manufacturers. SuperBeam works flawlessly, no matter what devices you are using.
However, if SuperBeam doesn’t work for you, you may want to try these alternatives as well:
1. Send! File Transfer: Similar to SuperBeam, but has issues with Wi-Fi Direct. NFC pairing works flawlessly though.
2. WiFi Shoot Pro: Simple to use app that supports Wi-Fi Direct, but not NFC.
2. Any Send: Only supports file transfer over existing Wi-Fi networks. Wi-Fi Direct, NFC and hotspot mode are not supported.
Found a file transfer app that’s better than SuperBeam? We’d love to hear from you. Drop down a comment below 🙂