When we talk about sharing we tend to focus on the sharing of data with other people, through Facebook or Twitter, a blog or an email, or even a simple text or multimedia message. But when it comes to sharing data with yourself, the solution isn't always so straightforward. See Android Advisor.
Personal file-sharing is possible through the use of short-distance data-transfer technology, such as Bluetooth and near-field communication (NFC), a simple data cable, or a cloud-storage service such as Dropbox. But the process is rarely seamless, and you usually have to think about the best way to share certain files before you get started. See Best Android Apps.
Moreover, while today's tablets and smartphones are computers in their own right, able to quickly put at your fingertips all the information you need, some of us still prefer to browse for that information on a home laptop or work PC. The problem is then in getting that data from desktop to mobile computer. It really shouldn't be this difficult.
PushBullet is a free Android app that simplifies the sharing of data between your devices, and places all that data in a central repository for easy access. It offers simple, but incredibly useful, functionality - so much so, more than 15,000 Android users downloaded the app within two weeks of its debut in Google Play.
To get started, simply download PushBullet from Google Play, then sign in with your Google account details. Next, head to pushbullet.com on your PC or laptop. In a few simple clicks you can push from your PC to your phone or tablet files, a shopping or to-do list, reminders, addresses and anything else you need for the day ahead.
Any devices on which you have the PushBullet app installed will be listed in the desktop browser, along with buttons that let you either push files to that device or enable others to do the same (note that they will need to sign up to PushBullet before this is possible). So, for instance, if you're meeting a friend after work for a drink, they can directly push the address of the bar to your phone.
To share some data with your phone or tablet, click 'Push to this device', enter a note, address, list or website link, or browse to a file on your PC (must be smaller than 10MB), then click Push It! Open the app on your mobile device and that data appears at the top of the list. A refresh button is found in the app, but we never needed to press it; pushes are instant.
If the data is an address you can open it in Google Maps or any other navigation app preinstalled on your device; if it's a URL it will automatically open in your default browser; files open in the relevant app; notes are displayed in a clear, logical manner; and you can tick off items in a to-do list as you complete them.
You'll be alerted to new data by Android's notifications bar - if you're using Android Jelly Bean, you won't even need to open the PushBullet app to access and interact with the data. And having already opened a notifcation, you can easily restore that notification for later use by tapping the relevant icon at the top of the app. This same icon can download to your device a file pushed from your PC.
If you use Google Chrome on your PC or laptop, a PushBullet extension adds a handy icon to the toolbar. Using this you can instantly push website links, notes and lists to any Android device on which you have the PushBullet app installed. The exception here is files, for which you'll still have to load up the PushBullet website.
PushBullet is a very simple app if all you want to do is quickly get files from A to B. But if your files need to return from B to A, or you want to view what's available on B from A, you need a different app. The developer has pledged to address this functionality in a future update.
There's no behind-the-scenes synching going on here; rather than updating a file you've already pushed to your phone or tablet, you simply send a new version of that file. Fortunately, PushBullet always lists the most recent pushes at the top of the list, and deleting an old file is as simple as selecting it and hitting the trash can icon.
- Android 2.3 or later
- 784kb storage
- Android 2.3 or later
- 784kb storage
Pushing files from a PC or laptop to a phone or tablet should be easy, but it rarely is. With PushBullet, you (or a friend) can transfer to your mobile device links, notes, lists, addresses, files and more in seconds. PushBullet sounds simple, and it is, but it's incredibly useful.