Google Play Store now lets you share apps with others for free.
Google’s Nearby Share feature made its debut last year allowing Android users to share files and other details with Android devices nearby. But the feature hasn’t really been a huge addition to the OS. Now, a new trick is rolling out that will let users transfer apps to others.
The feature is pretty situational, but it does have its uses. For instance, it could be a boon for those who want to share a large, free game but don’t have access to rapid or free Wi-Fi.
9to5Google notes that the feature is appearing for those running Google Play Store version 24.0 or newer. However, not all devices are receiving the feature simultaneously. While we found a Pixel 4a 5G running Android 11 and Play Store version 24.0.32 had the feature, a Huawei P30 Pro on Android 10 running the same Play Store version did not.
Here’s how to initiate the app sharing feature on the Google Play Store:
- Open the Play Store. Navigate to My apps & games in the app menu.
- Select the Share tab.
- To share apps with others, tap the Send button. To receive apps, tap Receive.
- On the Send apps screen, tap Continue. Nearby Share also requires that you switch on your device’s location.
- Select as many apps as you wish on the next screen by selecting their checkboxes. When complete, hit the green triangle in the top-right.
- Before the transfer can begin, you’ll need to search for and select a recipient. At this point, ask the intended recipient to complete steps 1 through 3 as required.
- Once the connection is established, both users will need to double-check that the four-digit pairing code matches. If so, the recipient can hit Receive.
- The download will then begin, and the recipient can hit Install alongside individual apps, or Install all.
Interestingly, once the two devices establish a connection via Nearby Share, both users can act as sender or recipient. A “Send apps” button allows the recipient to do just that, while the sender will see a “Send more apps” option instead.