What is AirDrop and How To Share Files Using it


Now, instantly send files to other Macs, iPhones and iPads


As technology advances the old is being replaced by new. In this regards, the trusty email can also be substituted by AirDrop. This might sound surprising, but AirDrop is actually a much better communications solution as compared to boring emails.

With AirDrop you can share files wirelessly between nearby Macs and iOS devices by means of an encrypted connection.

The best part is that without any lengthy setup you can start sharing files. The devices don’t have to be on the same network nor on same Wi-Fi connection. AirDrop automatically establish a direct connection between devices when in close proximity.

finder preference

It’s very easy to use AirDrop on a Mac, iPhone or iPad. To use it you need to select AirDrop using a Finder window sidebar or can choose Go > AirDrop. This will show you a list of nearby devices with which you can share files. You can even control visibility of your device by using the option present at the bottom of the window.

AirDrop gives recipient’s full right to accept or reject the files. When you drag and drop files and folders onto recipient icon he receives a message to accept or deny the transfer.

You need to have compatible app installed to receive the files, in case you are missing one iOS device will re direct to the App Store and will show list of apps that can complete the action.

share pictures to airdrop

Note: Besides using Finder to find AirDrop, you can even find it by clicking the share button which appears in Safari, Preview, Maps and other apps. Once you click on it, a new window with list of nearby devices, will open from here, you can choose the contact with which you want to share the file.

How to turn on AirDrop for iPhone

Airdrop iPhone

AirDrop gives you an option to enable it just between the contacts or for all. If you chose sharing between “Contacts” then both you and the selected, contact should be logged into iCloud. Also both should be in each other’s Contact list, and should be logged into iCloud only then AirDrop can be done.

Sending and receiving files when you chose “Everyone” is easy but if you are panicky about security you should never use this option. Using this option doesn’t mean that any random person will be able to send a file without your permission. But it can prove to be an interruption in your day to work. So to avoid troublemakers try not to use this option.

Launch Control Center by sliding up from the bottom of your iPhone.

Launch center

  1. Both Bluetoothand Wi-Fi are should be enabled. Wi-Fi should be on as it is needed to transfer files.
  2. Tap AirDrop.
  3. Now tap AirDrop to disable it. To enable your contact to AirDrop files to you, select Contacts Only. To AirDrop files with all select
  4. When you choose Contacts Only, both parties should be logged into iCloud.

Note: If you want to AirDrop from your iPad you can follow the above steps.

How to turn on AirDrop on iOS 11

Airdrop control center

  1. By swiping up from the bottom Launch Control Center on your iPhone.
  2. Both Bluetoothand Wi-Fi should be active for file transfer.
  3. Next Long Press connectivity settings to get more connectivity controls.
  4. Tap AirDrop
  5. Disable AirDrop by tapping Receiving Off, now select Contacts Onlyto share files with your contacts only. To AirDrop with all select(Note: When you select Contacts Only, ensure both the parties are logged into iCloud.)

Note: Apple is popular for its security and keeping that in mind it allows the receiver to accept or reject the shared file. Also when you chose to share between Contacts, your contacts with another device are not shared for checking the match. Instead, both your iCloud accounts are checked, if the match is found, it’ll show you your contact list the way it is saved on your own device. This guarantees that there is no data leakage.

How to AirDrop files from your iPhone

Airdrop files

Using built-in Share sheet, you can easily AirDrop files from an iPhone with anyone and all devices, which shows up in the Share sheet.

  1. To share select files, you want to send with AirDrop.
  2. Hit the Sharebutton to AirDrop.
  3. Next tap the contact and device with which files are to be shared.

AirDrop shows profile picture for one and all contacts. If you want to share files with multiple devices, you can see their profile picture multiple times and their device name in the sheet, so before starting you know you are picking the right contact.

Must Read: How To Share Files Between Mac And Windows PC

What to do if I cannot see contacts?

Don’t worry, if your contact does not appear in the AirDrop interface, try these troubleshooting steps:

  • To reset connection, turn Bluetooth/ Wi-Fi off and back on, or turn Airplance Mode on and off to reset the connections.
  • Free up Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connection by turning off Instant Hotspot.
  • For time being switch to Everyone and discard chances of contact mismatch.

This will help and will show you the list of contacts from where you can select you desired contact accurately.

How to Transfer Files to Computer with iTunes

  • Launch iTunes on your computer.
  • Next, connect your iPhone with your computer
  • Select the connected device from the device section of iTunes.

iTunes music

  • Next, click on the Apps tab and scroll to the bottom of the page.

iTunes apps

  • This will show list of apps that you can share under the File Sharing section. Now, select the app which has the file you wish to transfer to your computer.
  • Next, click Save to and select the location where you wish to save the file. To Save the file again click Save To.


How to Transfer Files From PC to iPhone using iTunes

  • Open iTunes on your PC.
  • Now connect iPhone to your PC.
  • Select your device from the Devices section of iTunes.


  • Click on the Apps tab and scroll down to the end of the page.
  • Here, under the File Sharing section you will see list of apps on your iPhone which support File Sharing.

File Sharing

  • Select the app you wish to transfer from your PC to iPhone.
  • Next click the Add button and choose the file you want to transfer from your PC to your iPhone. Again click Add to complete the process.

add adobe document

How to copy files using AirDrop from iPhone to your PC

To transfer files from iPhone to PC and vice versa make sure both you devices are connected with Wi-Fi as AirDrop uses it.  AirDrop works on Mac running OS X Yosemite or later.

Follow the steps to AirDrop from iPhone to PC:

  • Open the app on your iPhone that has the file you want to share with your computer.
  • Find the file and click the Share button (a box with an up arrow through it).
  • You’ll see AirDrop at the top of the Share menu.
  • Choose your computer’s name.
  • If successful, it will say Sent below your computer’s name.

If your computer is not using the same iCloud account as the iPhone you are sending files from, you will need to click Save when the file arrives on your computer. Otherwise, the document will automatically save.

How to Airdrop Files from Mac to iPhone

mac to iPhone

With both devices connected to Wi-Fi and within 30 feet of each other,

  • Open Finder on your Mac; select Go at the very top and choose AirDrop.
  • You should see your iPhone image in the AirDrop window;
  • If you don’t see your iPhone image, unlock your phone and it should appear.

Using the steps mentioned above you can easily share files between your Mac, iphone and ipad without any hassle. AirDrop is the most convenient way for exchange of data it is wireless and one doesn’t have to worry above security while using Contacts only.

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