AirDrop changed big time in iOS 17, so check your iPhone settings

Apple pushed out iOS 17.1 to enhance the host of latest options we acquired in iOS 17. The new additions embrace some vital adjustments to AirDrop, Apple’s short-range wi-fi tech which permits folks to rapidly share recordsdata between Apple gadgets and the brand new options are enabled by default.

These updates have implications for the best way that you simply (and the folks in your household) share data, so it’s vital to know what’s totally different and how one can disable the brand new performance if you wish to preserve every thing on your iPhone locked down.

AirDrop continues to be a vastly handy and dependable means of sharing recordsdata and information between Apple gadgets, however there are safety and privateness points that come together with it, and that it’s essential be on high of.


A NameDrop switch must be initiated at each ends. Credit: Apple

The first new function in AirDrop is NameDrop, which takes the trouble out of sharing contact data: If you meet somebody new who additionally has an iPhone, all it’s essential do is unlock your respective handsets and faucet them collectively to convey up a immediate to share contact data.

When the immediate seems, you possibly can faucet Receive Only to obtain the brand new contact particulars, or Share to obtain the contact particulars and ship yours again in return. Note that this solely works for sharing details about a brand new contact—you possibly can’t use it to replace the main points you have already got about somebody.

It’s in fact vital to remain updated with these options, however don’t panic about information studies (a few of which have been shared by native police departments) about strangers grabbing the contact particulars of children. Nothing is shared robotically: The on-screen immediate should be manually accepted, and the iPhone should be unlocked with Face ID, Touch ID or a PIN, for something to occur.

It is true that NameDrop is enabled by default when you’ve acquired the iOS 17.1 replace put in on your telephone. If you’d fairly this enhanced contact sharing function wasn’t switched on, open Settings, faucet General and AirDrop, and switch off the Bringing Devices Together toggle change.

Proximity Sharing

You can flip off proximity-based sharing if you wish to. Credit: David Nield

Next up is Proximity Sharing in AirDrop, which works like NameDrop however for images and different forms of recordsdata, not contact particulars. Essentially, it removes a few steps from the conventional AirDrop course of—simply convey two iPhones shut collectively if you wish to share one thing between them.

Head into the Photos or Files app initially, and get no matter it’s you wish to share up on display. Then, when you maintain the highest of your iPhone subsequent to the highest of another person’s iPhone, and so they’re each unlocked, you need to see an on-screen immediate to Share no matter it’s—faucet on this to provoke the switch.

On the receiving finish, the particular person you’re sharing one thing with must faucet the Accept immediate on display, simply as they might with an everyday AirDrop switch. The function can’t be used to start out pushing images, movies, or another content material to another person’s iPhone with out their permission.

Disabling this function is similar as it’s for NameDrop—go into the Settings panel on your iPhone, select General then AirDrop, and switch off Bringing Devices Together. AirDrop itself may be turned on or off from the identical display, however Proximity Sharing works independently—you possibly can have it switched on even when AirDrop is disabled.


Apple Music is among the apps the place SharePlay is enabled. Credit: David Nield

The ultimate function that Apple has enabled for 2 iPhones which can be pushed shut collectively is SharePlay: This is a function meaning you are able to do stuff along with one other particular person on your iPhones. Maybe you wish to watch an episode of a TV present in sync, for instance, or take heed to a selected music collectively.

To start with it’s essential be in an app that helps SharePlay—proper now, these are principally Apple apps, equivalent to Apple Music and Apple TV. As time goes on, third-party builders have the chance to construct the identical tech into their very own apps, so you’ll be capable of use the SharePlay function extra broadly.

All it’s essential do is open the content material you wish to share—like a music, a video, or a multiplayer sport that works with Apple’s Game Center—after which convey your iPhone near another person’s. Tap SharePlay on your display, after which there’s a affirmation immediate on the opposite iPhone that needs to be accepted too.

The SharePlay function may be accessed with out bringing your telephones collectively—when you’re on a FaceTime name with somebody, for instance—however the proximity choice was added in iOS 17.1. AirDrop must be on for it to work through telephone proximity, and you can also make this through AirDrop below General in Settings. SharePlay can’t be disabled system-wide, however you possibly can disable it in FaceTime by opening Settings and selecting FaceTime then SharePlay.

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