Google might soon put that Bump app it bought to use finally, with a new feature called Nearby, it's claimed.
Android Police has reported that Nearby will soon roll out to Android device owners in an upcoming Google Play Services update. Nearby will allegedly allow people to share information with other people around them and maybe even receive deal and coupon notifications from stores they're browsing through.
Nearby's onboarding screen offered the following feature description, according to Android Police: "Nearby lets you connect, share, and do more with people, places, and things near you. When Nearby is turned on for your account, Google can periodically turn on the mic, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and similar features on all your current and future devices. Google+ and other Google services need this access to help you connect, share, and more."
The ability to easily interact with devices nearby sounds a lot like the functionality previously seen in Bump, a mobile app start-up that Google acquired in September and later shut down. David Lieb, Bump's CEO and co-founder, said in January the Bump team was deeply focused on new projects within Google.
Bump enabled users to share contact information, photos, videos, apps, and files simply by bumping two phones together. Users just had to open the Bump app on handsets, then gently tap the handsets together, and Bump would auto-transfer any designated files.
Google's Nearby feature also sounds very similar to Apple's iBeacon technology. The idea is that your Android phone would recognise (via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth) a nearby beacon device hidden in a store or anywhere and then serve up targeted Wallet offers, reminders, and other related location-based notifications.
That's it for details on Nearby. Keep in mind that this leaked information isn't confirmed, so the feature may never actually come to fruition. However we could see the company talk about Nearby at its annual Google I/O conference later this month.