Google Buys File Transfer App Bump

Google has bought a file transfer app company originally created to address the absence of NFC on iPhones but then developed to work with Android too.

Users select pictures, video or contacts to transfer within the Bump app, which uses an algorithm in the cloud to detect when contact has been made between devices, be that phone-to-phone or phone-to-PC. Bump says it will continue to work as it is for now.

Apple unveiled its own peer-to-peer NFC pretender, AirDrop, when it announced the iOS 7 upgrade, which launches tomorrow. This potentially displaces the need for something like Bump but presumably limits sharing ability to iOS users only. AirDrop uses a combination of wifi and bluetooth. Samsung too has file sharing tech, Beam, which uses NFC, so the only solution that doesnt need internet connection to work.

Although it is not clear how often people actually use Samsungs Beam, Bump has done reasonably well historically in the App Store, classified as a social networking app, but does get mixed consumer reviews. These solutions appear to solve the power and speed issues associated with something like bluetooth and all of the tech companies seem to be sold on the consumer desire for quick file transfers.

It will be interesting to see if this push could be a precursor to an NFC-less, contactless payments race.