How to Transfer Files Between Android and Mac: 6 Easy Methods

Unlike Windows, macOS doesn’t let you natively browse the file system of your Android phone. Nor does its ad-hoc wireless service, AirDrop, work with Android phones.

This leaves you to rely on third-party options for transferring files between Android and macOS. Fortunately, a bunch of reliable third-party apps (including one from Google) fill the gap. Here are the best ways you can share files between a Mac and an Android phone.

1. Android File Transfer

Google’s own Android File Transfer tool is the quickest and the most hassle-free way for you to explore your phone’s files on a Mac. All you need to do is install the free app on your Mac and plug in the Android phone.

Android File Transfer will automatically detect the connection and show a window where you can transfer files back and forth, create or delete folders, and perform other file management tasks. You also don’t need to worry about installing any drivers since you’re using a Mac.

Download: Android File Transfer for Mac (Free)

2. OpenMTP

OpenMTP is very similar to Android File Transfer but is a lot more powerful. It has a better interface, with split windows enabling you to see both your Mac and phone’s contents at the same time, making it easier to drag files from one place to the other. Compared to Android File Transfer, it’s simpler to transfer files from Android to Mac and vice versa using OpenMTP.

Copying is fast, you can move files over 4GB in one go, see hidden files on both devices if you want to, and there are keyboard shortcuts for power users. Setup is easy, but do make sure you follow the instructions when you get started. Best of all, it’s free and open-source.

Download: OpenMTP for Mac (Free)

3. Commander One

If you’re looking for a more professional Android to Mac file transfer tool, you should try Commander One.

Commander One comes with a sophisticated dashboard where you can perform a variety of actions, such as quickly copying large chunks of files, setting up an FTP server, instantly switching disks, searching files with regular expressions (RegEx), and more. The app has a tabbed interface, letting you juggle multiple storage drives with ease.

Plus, Commander One offers a wide selection of keyboard shortcuts you can customize per your preferences. This app, however, is not free. You can try it free for 15 days to decide if it’s worth the cost to you.

Download: Commander One for Mac (Free trial, $30)

4. Pushbullet

Pushbullet brings features typically only available across Apple devices, like a universal clipboard, to Android. Plus, Pushbullet also allows you to share files, browse your phone’s internal storage remotely on a computer, reply to SMS messages, and more. It’s the complete package.

Despite what you’d think, it’s also free (with some limitations). To set it up, sign up on the Pushbullet website with your Google or Facebook account. Install the app on your Android phone and all your other devices via the browser clients (you need to use Chrome or Firefox rather than Safari).

After that, set up Pushbullet by following the guided steps inside the app and on the website. Once you’re signed in everywhere, you need to enable Remote Files on your Android phone, so you can easily send files, links, and more across every platform. You can do so in the app by tapping Account in the bottom right, and going to Remote Files > Enable.

Download: Pushbullet for Chrome | Android (Free, subscription available)

5. Send Anywhere

Pushbullet used to also offer a browser-based service that was great for transferring files between Android and Mac wirelessly called Portal. However, that shut down in October 2021. We recommend Send Anywhere as one of the best alternatives to Pushbullet.

Send Anywhere functions similarly to Portal but doesn’t use a browser—you must install the Mac app instead. You enter a code, and the transfer begins over a Wi-Fi network. The difference is that it has a more comprehensive set of features, like the ability to quickly select images and videos, Wi-Fi Direct compatibility, and more.

Even better, you can also create links for files to share them with multiple devices. Send Anywhere provides one of the fastest ways to share files between any laptop and mobile device. The free version of Send Anywhere comes with an ad-supported design, but you can upgrade by paying a small fee.

Download: Send Anywhere for Android | Mac (Free, premium version available)

6. Cloud Storage Services

If you’re someone who only occasionally shares data between your computer and Android phone, you can probably rely on your preferred cloud storage like Google Drive or Dropbox. The process is quick, and you don’t have to go through any configuration.

Plus, choosing this method won’t restrict your files to just a Mac and Android phone. You can access them from anywhere, no matter what device you’re on.

If it offers one, install your cloud service’s desktop backup tool. That way, your computer files are always available to download on your phone.

The Best Android File Transfer Apps for Mac

All of these methods will let you easily share files between Android and macOS, both on wired and wireless connections. While Apple understandably hasn’t added any continuity features for Android like these, thankfully, third-party developers have come forward and built several great options.

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