All modern devices are built with a Bluetooth function, so it’s not surprising why you want to know how to share files over Bluetooth on a PC or Mac. Both systems allow users to send or receive all sorts of files, including photos, videos, and audio files.
Enable Bluetooth in Windows 10
Let’s review the process of turning on Bluetooth on your PC.
- First, you got to locate Bluetooth settings. On the Windows Start menu, click Settings.
- Once you’re in Settings, find Devices then Bluetooth to access your Bluetooth settings. Now click the slider next to the Bluetooth option. You’ll know when it’s up and ready when the On appears next to the slider.
- You have to make sure that your PC can be found. To do this, go to More Bluetooth options under the Related settings section on the right.
- Under the Options tab, click to enable the checkbox next to the Allow Bluetooth devices to find this PC option.
- There’s a way to access your Bluetooth devices and settings quickly from the Bluetooth taskbar icon, but you may not see this option at first. To enable this, click to enable the checkbox next to the Show the Bluetooth icon in the notifications area option. It’s under the Options tab of the Bluetooth Settings window.
- Now click OK to save.
How to Pair Bluetooth Devices on Windows
To allow sending files over Bluetooth, both devices must be paired properly. This allows for a strong connection between the Bluetooth capable device and your PC.
- Open the Bluetooth settings menu on your PC and click Add Bluetooth or other devices at the top.
- Click Bluetooth in the Add a device menu. Make sure that Bluetooth is discoverable on your other device.
- Wait for Windows to scan for nearby devices. Once it finds your other device, click on it to start the connection. Windows will provide an authentication PIN code that you may need to enter on your other device to ensure a connection has been established.
- Once you have a stable connection and your devices have been paired, you should see a Your device is ready to go message in the Add a device window.
Transfer Files Via Bluetooth to a Windows PC
Once Bluetooth is enabled, you can start sending and receiving files to a Windows PC. Remember that your PC is also discoverable by others. Here’s how to start sending files:
- To send a file to a Windows PC, find the Bluetooth icon in the notifications area of your taskbar. Right-click the icon then press the Receive a File option.
- Windows is now ready to receive files. A Waiting for a connection message will appear in the Bluetooth File Transfer window.
- You can now begin sending files from your other device to your PC.
Sharing files over Bluetooth can be done in several ways. If you have noticed, most Android photo gallery or file management apps always have a Share button and clicking it will present you with multiple methods to share. Among these options is Bluetooth. Simply click on it for your device to start looking for something to pair with.
If your other device isn’t a smartphone, for example, a digital camera, it will have its own method for enabling Bluetooth and sending files.
However, the method of pairing and copying the file remains the same. Ensure that Bluetooth is active and that your computer is connected with your PC, and make sure that the Receive File window is open and ready to receive your files.
If the process fails first, try again.
Bluetooth connections can fail for several reasons, including too much space between devices, interference from other sources, or lack of approval for transfers (e.g. being too sluggish to accept them on your devices), so be sure to double-check your connection before continuing.
Sending Files to a Mac
File transfers from Bluetooth devices to Macs are typically easy to complete if you’re using an iPhone or iPad since you’re using AirDrop for transfers. You can access your Bluetooth devices and configurations from the System Preferences > Bluetooth menu, where you can browse and connect to other devices.
You will quickly access AirDrop on your Mac by opening Finder and clicking on AirDrop in the left-hand menu where Apple devices are placed nearby.
As long as the Allow me to explore settings at the bottom of the window are set to Everyone, other local Mac, iPhone, and iPad users will be able to send files to this device. Unfortunately, transferring files from other types of computers to a Mac is a touch harder. If you want to transfer files into different platforms, you can use iCloud instead. It is a cloud base storage created by Apple.
Android smartphones, for example, find it hard to connect to a Mac and use Bluetooth file transfers. You may use Bluetooth for other purposes, such as Internet tethering, but file transfers normally fail. You’d need to use an alternate method, such as a direct USB link or an alternative cloud storage method, to transfer files instead.
You can face related problems with other forms of Bluetooth-enabled gadgets. If this is the case, explore alternative connection mechanisms for these machines, such as cable or external media.
Using Bluetooth on Windows and Mac
A lot of time and effort will be saved if you choose to transfer files using Bluetooth, but only of course if your devices are nearby. The other techniques mentioned are much better used for file transfers in distant locations, including sending large files by email or through using online services for file transfers, but only if you’re sure that the specific service is secure.
But Bluetooth’s uses are not only limited to file transfers. A Bluetooth capable PC will benefit from wireless peripherals, wireless communication using a mic or headset, and stream music wirelessly through Bluetooth speakers like the Amazon Echo.
What about you? How are you using Bluetooth tech?