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Samsung Flow Enters Beta to Take on Apple Continuity

One of the best features of iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite for Apple fans is Continuity, a feature that effortlessly connects Apple phones, tablets and computers. For Android users on Samsung phones, that gap may be about to close. Samsung Flow, which transfers content easily between Samsung phones and tablets, is now available on the Google Play store in beta form.

Android aficionados who own a Samsung Galaxy S5, Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy Alpha, Note 4, Note Edge or Galaxy Tab S can now download the program from the Google Play Store. Right now, the program's abilities are modest: either Transfer an activity to another device, or Defer it for later.

Transferring an activity is what it sounds like. For example, if you're watching a movie on your phone, you can select Transfer and pick it up immediately on your tablet. Go to an app's options menu, choose Transfer, and the content will show up right away on whichever compatible Samsung device you choose.

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Defer appears to be the more useful of the two options. Using the example of watching a movie again, say that you have something on your smartphone during your after-work commute. As your commute ends, you can select Defer and pick it up right where you left off on your tablet once you arrive back home. Defer also works through an app's options menu.

As Samsung Flow is still in beta, user reviews have been mixed. It apparently doesn't always work as advertised, and its functionality is limited. Transfer and Defer can be useful, but it doesn't quite rival the full feature suite of Apple Continuity. Still, a new program has to start somewhere, and Samsung enthusiasts can try it out for themselves.

Marshall Honorof is a senior writer for Tom's Guide. Contact him at mhonorof@tomsguide.com. Follow him @marshallhonorof. Follow us @tomsguide, on Facebook and on Google+.