I think it’s safe to say that we’ve all seen at least one of Samsung’s commercials, highlighting the S-beam feature, designed to make sharing photos with others as quick and easy as high-fiving your devices together. But as Samsung repeatedly points out, that delightful chirp only happens when you have 2 NFC capable devices to slam together, leaving iPhone users to watch with envy (seriously, Samsung?). AirLike for iPhone is looking to make sharing just as easy (and, possibly a little less dorky).
Gone are the days of texting and email pictures to someone across the room from you, as AirLike for iPhone (Free in the App Store) is reshaping the way we share photos, videos and contact info, but without the fuss of bumping phones or being friends already.
Setting up AirLike is super easy, either allowing you to sign-up through Facebook or setup an account with an email address. The process was very smooth, asking for a name, email address, and password. Once you’re in, you’ll be asked to allow AirLike access to your location, photos, and contacts (obviously to allow sharing of said items). Then the fun can begin.
By simply pointing two phones with AirLike running at one another, you are prompted to connect to the others phone (near the top). The other user confirms that they’ll accept whatever you’re sending them, and away you go. A simple click up on a picture, video, or contact sends it across to the other device seamlessly, and very quickly.
Unlike messaging or email, there’s no need to know the other persons email address, phone number, or Apple ID, so long as you are in close proximity and pointed at one another. In my testing, I was able to confirm that once the 2 devices are “connected,” you no longer have to point at one another, but it sure makes it look cool.
To make the entire AirLike concept even cooler, if you can get your hands on the Displair “screen”, you can actually flick images and video from your phone onto the Displair. While I wasn’t provided one to play with and test, it certainly sounds like a cool feature.
Unfortunately, with the exception of the added Displair sharing, this is just a more cumbersome, proprietary version of AirDrop on iOS (at this point, there isn’t an Android version for cross-platform sharing). Since iOS 7 has AirDrop built into the core of the system, I can’t see this being a more practical solution for most users.
Verdict [rating: 3]
AirLike is a delightfully designed, easy to use App, that offers a feature that wasn’t readily available on iOS 6 or before. Unfortunately, the built-in addition of AirDrop in iOS 7 really hurt AirLike’s chances of really making a dent in how files are shared. In a real-life situation, both users would need to have AirLike installed and have the apps open to be practical. Improving on a stock iOS app’s function is one thing, replicating it or making a process more complex is another, and with AirLike, that is what seems to be what is happening.
- Simple to setup
- Straight-forward and easy to use
- Clean iOS 7 design
- Does what AirDrop does, only in more steps
- Devices need to be quite close to pair initially (roughly 12” max in my testing)
If you’re set on staying on iOS 6, or anticipate sharing lots of photos with Android devices (once the Android version launches), check out AirLike – free in the App Store.
*The above review was commissioned by the developer in accordance with ourapp review policy, and has been written in an objective, unbiased fashion.