AirDrop over 3G/4G?

sportsfrk214

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Original poster
Sep 18, 2007
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Question: will AirDrop work over 3G and 4G? It seems like an incredibly useful feature. But I can't think of too many situations where I'd want to use AirDrop, and that me and my friends are on the same Wi-Fi network. In most situations I'd be in a place where I'm using cell service. As for Bluetooth, I never use it for anything else, and it would be annoying to have it on just for this feature. Anyone here with any info?
 

DaveOP

macrumors 65816
May 29, 2011
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2,080
Portland, OR
Question: will AirDrop work over 3G and 4G? It seems like an incredibly useful feature. But I can't think of too many situations where I'd want to use AirDrop, and that me and my friends are on the same Wi-Fi network. In most situations I'd be in a place where I'm using cell service. As for Bluetooth, I never use it for anything else, and it would be annoying to have it on just for this feature. Anyone here with any info?
You don't have to be on the same network. It sets up a connection directly between your phones using an ad-hoc wifi.
 

Saberon

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Sep 16, 2008
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1
I don't think you have to be on the same WiFi Network to use Airdrop, just in proximity to each other. They said it uses P2P
 

Anti-Lucifer

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Mar 9, 2012
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At first I thought you needed a wifi access point! But now you dont using peer to peer wifi, damn, this just kicked NFC sharing in the sack.
 

msephton

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Jan 6, 2004
318
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Cornwall, UK
No, it's adhoc wifi between two devices with a modern enough wifi chip

That's why it's only recent Macs (prior to iOS) and iOS devices
 

sportsfrk214

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Original poster
Sep 18, 2007
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Oh well that's a shame :/ During normal use outside of my home, which is where I'd be using the AirDrop feature the most, I'm rarely on Wi-Fi. It's just hard to find and maintain a Wi-Fi signal on the move, I'm almost always on data. I guess I can use Bluetooth, but that means a friend would need to use Bluetooth is well. Might just be easier to text a picture.

So then I guess my next question is: how much does it effect battery life leaving Bluetooth on all the time?
 

Shaddow825

macrumors 6502
Mar 13, 2006
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Oh well that's a shame :/ During normal use outside of my home, which is where I'd be using the AirDrop feature the most, I'm rarely on Wi-Fi. It's just hard to find and maintain a Wi-Fi signal on the move, I'm almost always on data. I guess I can use Bluetooth, but that means a friend would need to use Bluetooth is well. Might just be easier to text a picture.

So then I guess my next question is: how much does it effect battery life leaving Bluetooth on all the time?
I think you are misunderstanding. You do not need to be connected to a wifi network, you just need to be near someone and your iphone will connect via wifi directly to theirs, no access point needed.
 

joejoejoe

macrumors 65816
Sep 13, 2006
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I think you are misunderstanding. You do not need to be connected to a wifi network, you just need to be near someone and your iphone will connect via wifi directly to theirs, no access point needed.
has anyone managed to get this to work? today i was standing right next to another person with an ios 7 iphone 5 and we weren't popping up on each other's airdrop share panel... we're in each other's contacts and both had said airdrop functionality to everyone rather than contacts only.
 
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imaginex20

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Jun 17, 2009
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has anyone managed to get this to work? today i was standing right next to another person with an ios 7 iphone 5 and we weren't popping up on each other's wifi... we're in each other's contacts and both had said airdrop functionality to everyone rather than contacts only.
you don't show up in each other's wifi...when you select a picture/file/location to be shared and if you're near someone with AirDrop enabled, it will show that person in the "share" panel.
 

Technarchy

macrumors 604
May 21, 2012
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At first I thought you needed a wifi access point! But now you dont using peer to peer wifi, damn, this just kicked NFC sharing in the sack.
Yeah, NFC just got ran over by a freight train. Kinda funny actually.

Also, Airdrop uses Wi-Fi P2P type standard which is a Wi-Fi protocol that enables devices to connect without requiring a wireless access point.
 

Michael CM1

macrumors 603
Feb 4, 2008
5,676
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Yeah, NFC just got ran over by a freight train. Kinda funny actually.

Also, Airdrop uses Wi-Fi P2P type standard which is a Wi-Fi protocol that enables devices to connect without requiring a wireless access point.
Is this the reason why it's only going to work on literally the latest devices? I don't understand why the previous generation -- iPhone 4S, iPad 3 -- won't work. I know my iPad 3 uses a 5GHz radio, so it's not that.
 

profets

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Mar 18, 2009
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has anyone managed to get this to work? today i was standing right next to another person with an ios 7 iphone 5 and we weren't popping up on each other's wifi... we're in each other's contacts and both had said airdrop functionality to everyone rather than contacts only.
Exact same thing happening to me and a friend when trying. Neither of us see anyone show up in the sharing panel where AirDrop is.
 

0000757

macrumors 68040
Dec 16, 2011
3,894
842
Oh well that's a shame :/ During normal use outside of my home, which is where I'd be using the AirDrop feature the most, I'm rarely on Wi-Fi. It's just hard to find and maintain a Wi-Fi signal on the move, I'm almost always on data. I guess I can use Bluetooth, but that means a friend would need to use Bluetooth is well. Might just be easier to text a picture.

So then I guess my next question is: how much does it effect battery life leaving Bluetooth on all the time?
No no, see, basically AirDrop uses technology called Wi-Fi Direct. When two Wi-Fi direct devices connect, they create a special Wi-Fi network between those 2 devices only. No internet connection is required. It does also use a mix of Bluetooth 4.0, so if you have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth turned off, it automatically connects, then when you turn it off, it turns them off.
 

joejoejoe

macrumors 65816
Sep 13, 2006
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you don't show up in each other's wifi...when you select a picture/file/location to be shared and if you're near someone with AirDrop enabled, it will show that person in the "share" panel.
typo. we're not showing up in each other's airdrop share panel. tried it again today, no luck.
 

mrtune

macrumors 6502a
Jun 23, 2007
803
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Is wifi turned on for both phones? I believe it needs to be on (even if not connected to any network) for this feature to work.
 

imaginex20

macrumors 65816
Jun 17, 2009
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typo. we're not showing up in each other's airdrop share panel. tried it again today, no luck.
In the control panel, did you guys set the setting to "Everyone", "Contacts only" or "Off"?

Make sure you set it to "Everyone" if they're not you're contact. I have used it a few times already with a co-worker.
 

sportsfrk214

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 18, 2007
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Oh wow very interesting. Ok so then this feature just became insanely useful and I agree much much better than NFC! Not even close.

I suppose the last question then is....does Wi-Fi need to be on for this to work?
 

bearda

macrumors 6502
Dec 2, 2005
446
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Roanoke, VA
Yeah, NFC just got ran over by a freight train. Kinda funny actually.

Also, Airdrop uses Wi-Fi P2P type standard which is a Wi-Fi protocol that enables devices to connect without requiring a wireless access point.
I don't think NFC is going anywhere. AirDrop and WiFi Direct are good for communicating between smart devices (and there I agree it sounds much more promising than NFC), but NFC is much better suited to communicating with dumb devices. POS terminals, smart tags, etc. I don't see paying for gas via AirDrop any time soon, but I've been surprised at the number of pumps near me that work with Google Wallet.
 

joejoejoe

macrumors 65816
Sep 13, 2006
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In the control panel, did you guys set the setting to "Everyone", "Contacts only" or "Off"?

Make sure you set it to "Everyone" if they're not you're contact. I have used it a few times already with a co-worker.
yup, as per my first post we both have it set to everyone.

looks like others have the same problem.

if we can find a workaround, great! if not, I hope Apple fixes in beta 2. Assured it'll be taken care of before fall but hoping to test the feature out sooner.