Chromebooks finally have an answer to AirDrop on Apple MacBooks

Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2
(Image credit: Samsung)

Chromebooks are about to copy one of the things we like the most about MacBooks: AirDrop. In fact, it’s making sharing photos between Android phones and Chrome OS laptops even easier.

Announced at Google I/O 2021, the search giant revealed new synchronization features for Chrome OS that will let Android users easily pull recent photos from their smartphones without digging through complex file structures. 

Once this upgrade is rolled out,  the most recent photos snapped on the likes of a Google Pixel 5 will now appear in the Phone Hub section located at the bottom left side of the screen, ready to be viewed, edited or shared at a moment's notice.

Phone Hub pops up once a smartphone is connected to a Chromebook and allows for control over notifications, access to recent Chrome tabs, and soon the new photo-sharing.

Such tweaks might not seem revolutionary but they introduce a similar level of integration enjoyed by Apple product users, notably the synchronization between, say, an iPhone 12 and Macbook Pro. This new photo-sharing future in Phone Hub looks potentially easier to use than the rather slick AirDrop feature between iPhones and MacBooks. 

For keen bloggers and people into using their smartphone photos in various content, this upgrade could be a boon to productivity and the difference between truing around a sharp blog post and getting such in a quagmire of files and sub-folders. 

Tighter integration between Chrome OS and Android has been happening for some time, especially now that Chrome OS can run Android apps. All of which can help make fully investing in the Google software and hardware ecosystem more appealing. Though arguably the search giant has some way to go before it delivers as seamless an experience as macOS and iOS devices. 

We'd not be surprised to see the likes of the Google Pixel 6recently spotted in the Android 12 beta — come with more features that span Google's wider hardware and software products. Though interestingly Google is seemingly making it easier to get apps for Android beyond the Play Store, so alongside tighter integration comes more flexibility. 

We don't know ow exactly when this new photo-sharing feature will be rolled out to Chrome OS, but now is a good time to check out our selection of the best Chromebooks list, especially if you're had enough of WIndows 10 laptops and don't fancy moving to iOS. 

Kenneth Seward Jr.

Kenneth Seward Jr. is a freelance writer, editor and illustrator who covers games, movies and more. Follow him @kennyufg and on Twitch.