How to Turn On AirDrop on iOS


The AirDrop® feature is a pretty cool part of being an Apple® device user. Wondering how to turn on AirDrop on an iOS® device, like your MacBook® computer? Or maybe you don’t know how to turn on Airdrop on your iPhone®. Try these steps to get sharing ASAP!

How to Use AirDrop on iPhone

Before you start trying to AirDrop messages and photos, let’s make sure your iPhone® is all AirDrop ready. AirDrop is made to instantly transmit messages or photos- but first, you’re going to want to make sure the person you’re trying to AirDrop is in range. That means they should be close enough for Bluetooth® and Wi-Fi to reach them. 

Be sure to check that you and the person you’ll be AirDropping with both have Bluetooth and Wi-Fi enabled, too. To do that, just swipe up on your iPhone and make sure that the two bottom icons are blue. Make sure the other user also has their AirDrop settings turned on, and that their phone has been set up to receive AirDrops. 

They can have it set up to receive AirDrops from “Contacts Only” if you have them as a contact on your phone, or they can set it to “Everyone.” Setting it to “Everyone” means that they’re able to receive AirDrops from anyone, even if there’s no contact set– including you.


How to AirDrop an App

Now that your phone is all set up and ready for AirDrop, let’s walk through how to do it! If you’re trying to share an app with your friend, whether it’s a social media app or a mobile game you love, simply press and hold down on the app and tap “Share App. “

From here, you’ll get a whole list of ways to share the app. You’ll want to find and click the one that says AirDrop. Then a list of people’s phones that are nearby (or that are in your contacts and close enough) will come up. Simply search for the person you’re wanting to AirDrop and click on their name. Congratulations: you’ve successfully AirDropped an app! 


How to AirDrop a Photo 

For a photo, the process is relatively similar, except you’ll need to go into your photos instead. Find the one you want to AirDrop and click the share button in the bottom left-corner of your screen. From there, follow the same steps outlined above to AirDrop the picture.


How to Receive an AirDrop

This part is even easier. If someone else wants to send you something through AirDrop, they can follow the steps outlined in the previous section. Once they’re finished, you’ll get a pop up notification on your iPhone with a preview of what they sent offering the option to “Accept” or “Decline” the AirDrop. If you click “Accept,” it will complete the AirDrop; photos will be put in your camera roll, websites will be opened through Safari®, and an app sent through AirDrop will take you to the App store so you can install it. 


How to Adjust Your AirDrop Settings

Go into your Settings and click “General.” Tap “AirDrop,” then pick whatever option you want. You can also do this by swiping down from the right-hand corner of your screen (if you’re using a newer iPhone model), or by swiping up if you’re using an iPhone 8 or older model. 

Tap and hold the upper left-hand corner card, which has your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth in it. Then tap and hold the AirDrop button. From here you can change your settings to: “Receiving,” “Off,” “Contacts Only,” and “Everyone.” These settings allow you to change who you can send an AirDrop to, or receive an AirDrop from. 


Common issues blocking AirDrop

The most common issue is also a really simple fix– make sure both you and the person you’re AirDropping have Bluetooth and Wi-Fi turned on and all their AirDrop settings are set to receive whatever you’re going to AirDrop to them. You should also make sure your iPhone is running the latest iOS; if not, AirDrop may not work as intended. Besides, running the latest version of iOS on your phone is generally more secure anyway. 

If your AirDrop is still stubbornly not working after trying all these methods, try resetting your iPhone. You can do this by holding the power until the “Slide to Power Off” option appears on your screen. Let your phone power off, then hold the button again to turn it back on. You can also hard-reset your iPhone by holding the power button and the lower volume button at the same time.


Devices Compatible with AirDrop

In order to AirDrop something successfully, you’re going to need to use either a Mac built after 2012 that is using OS X Yosemite or a later version, or an iPhone or iPad with access to iOS 7 or later. 




This content is written by the uBreakiFix marketing team and is not endorsed, sponsored, or otherwise authorized by Apple Inc. AirDrop®, MacBook®, iCloud®, iPhone®, iPod®, iPad® and Mac® are the trademarks of Apple Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. IOS is a trademark or registered trademark of Cisco in the U.S. and other countries and is used under license.

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