Google has introduced a new pairing technology Fast Pair, something which you won’t be hearing much at least for the next few months. This is the Mountainview giant’s answer to effortless pairing that Apple introduced with Air Pods for its ecosystem of devices.
What is Google’s Fast Pair?
Fast Pair uses Bluetooth LE and your Android phone’s location to track nearby Bluetooth devices and then connect them with a simple tap.
While pairing, you will also see the image of the accessory on your phone (just as is the case with AirPods). Apart from the product image, your phone will also fetch the companion app for the product and prompt you to download it from play store.
But the Bluetooth accessory has to be Fast Pair enabled and your Android Phone should be running Marshmallow+ as the base operating system and should have the Google Play Services (11.7) or higher installed on it. This should be as convenient as NFC pairing or even more.
Existing Bluetooth Devices might work too
Google Notes that the technology behind Fast Pair is ‘classic Bluetooth’ and the connection reliability should get some boost with the next iteration, the Bluetooth 5.
It’s good that Google has extended Fast Pair support back to Android Marshmallow which should ensure more users get access to it, and this should also motivate accessory makers to release compatible devices sooner.
Even existing accessories can get fast pair support but for that accessory makers have to register with Google.
What Bluetooth accessories support Android Fast Pair At launch?
As of now, the list is pretty limited:
- Google’s Pixel Buds
- Libratone’s Q Adapt On-Ear
- Plantronics Voyager 8200-series wireless headsets