In June a report detailed a feature in development by Google that would reportedly allow Android devices to alert “people, places, and things” to the presence of nearby users. At the time, reports referred to the feature as “Nearby” and described it as a location-based feature for Android devices in close proximity to one another. Today, AndroidPolice is back with more info pointing to evidence that the feature will be cross-platform and allow Android and iOS devices to share content and communicate when nearby.
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To authenticate with one another, the two devices would apparently be able to use location information or Bluetooth, perhaps along with a functionality similar to “whisper,” the ultrasonic authentication method Google has used for the Chromecast to allow devices to connect from different networks. Actual information would be transferred using Wi-Fi or Wi-Fi direct… Android and iOS devices communicate with one another in a variety of ways, exchanging files, photos, directions, messages, or other content…
The report says the feature is being referred to as Copresence internally and shared the images (above and below) that were discovered by a tipster in the latest Google Play Services APK. The images depict both iOS and Android devices sharing files, photos, audio, and text between one another using what is reportedly the under development Copresence feature.
More evidence, as the report points out, comes from recent developer documentation for a Copresence Chrome API, patents, and internal issue reports for the API that reference the service. AndroidPolice claims the service could arrive in “the coming weeks.”