How To Use Airdrop (iPhone and Mac) A Step-by-Step Guide

logo of AirDrop

How To Use Airdrop (iPhone and Mac) A Step-by-Step Guide

Key Points:

  • AirDrop uses Bluetooth on a person’s phone to broadcast and create connections with a nearby device. Then it uses Wi-Fi to transfer the data between the devices.
  • It allows data to be transferred very fast without data loss.
  • You can only share data between like iPhones, iPads, and Macs.

AirDrop is one of the easiest ways of sharing files. Big or small, you can share any file with a nearby Apple device through AirDrop. To AirDrop file, you have to be within the vicinity of other Apple devices. AirDrop uses a combination of WiFi and Bluetooth to connect to any Apple device within 30 feet of each other. Let’s look at how to use AirDrop on a Mac computer and your portable iOS devices.

On a Mac Computer

1. Make sure AirDrop is turned on

Before we go through the whole process and get frustrated that it’s not working, the first thing we want to check is whether it’s on or not.

To check that it’s on, open the Finder window and click on AirDrop in the left side menu bar. After clicking that option, it might ask you to turn on your WiFi and Bluetooth. If lines in the window glow blue, the Finder is on.

2. Open the file you want to share

Now that you have it on the file, you want to share it via AirDrop. To start sharing, you can either right-click on the file and choose Share or single-click on the file selected and click on the share icon in the top menu bar.

3. Choose AirDrop

There will be a list of sharing options with either method you choose. From this list, click on AirDrop.

4. Select the contact you want to share with

After selecting AirDrop as your sharing method, a list of nearby Apple devices you can share the file will appear. Typically, the names that you see are names that people assign to the device they are using. So, it may not always be their exact name.

Congratulations, you have shared a file with AirDrop. Note that this process is the same for both Macbooks and iMacs.

Check out the video below for a detailed guide to using AirDrop on your Mac.

On an iPhone or iPad

1. Open an App

Most apps on the iPhone or iPad have some sharing feature, but for this example, we will be using the Photos app.

2. Tap Share

Once you find the photo you wish to share, tap on the share icon in the bottom left corner of the screen. You may need to tap on the image to bring up this menu.

3. Select AirDrop

After you open the sharing menu, you will see options for sharing the photo. From this list, choose AirDrop. The icon will be a white square with a blue-lined circle on it.

4. Choose the contact you wish to share the file with

After selecting AirDrop, you will see a list of the nearby Apple devices that you can share to. Next, choose the person you wish to share the file with. Names on AirDrop will not always be the same as those in the contacts.

Congratulations! You have shared a file using AirDrop on your iPhone or iPad.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I accept AirDrop on my iPhone?

When someone is trying to share a file with you via AirDrop, you will receive a notification asking if you Accept or Deny this file. If you do want the file select the Accept option.

Why is my AirDrop on iPhone not working?

If AirDrop on your phone is not working, the issue could be Bluetooth is off. If it is, make sure that AirDrop is on, and you can receive files from everyone or if you have the person in your contacts.

Do you need Wi-Fi for AirDrop?

You do not need WiFi to allow AirDrop to work. All you need is for your BlueTooth to be on.

How many pics can u AirDrop at once?

Theoretically, there is no limit to how many photos you can share via AirDrop. The limiting factor is your processing power to send and receive pictures.

How far can iPhone AirDrop?

The maximum range for an AirDrop is around 30 feet. This can vary depending on your location and the conditions, but it is 30 feet under ideal conditions.

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