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How to use Pushbullet, the app that lets you send files and messages from one device to another — on any platform

Pushbullet is one of the best apps available on any platform that lets you share files, links, and messages with friends and the devices you own.

We listed Pushbullet as one of the very best apps you can find on Android, but its beauty is actually hidden in the app’s compatibility with all the other major operating systems too, such as iOS, macOS, and Windows.

The fact that you can download and use it almost everywhere makes sharing stuff from one device to another — be it photos, links, text, files, or what have you — easy and fast.

You can think of it as a handy group chat where the participants are your multiple devices, if you will: Pushbullet has a “universal clipboard,” which makes you find all of your pushes from any of your devices whenever you need it.

This adds an extra layer of user-friendliness very few other apps can tout. Let’s take a closer look:

The browser extension is possibly Pushbullet’s handiest feature

The browser extension is possibly Pushbullet's handiest feature

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

One of the platforms Pushbullet lives in is the web. It lets you share links, images, and files you find on the internet by “pushing” them to one of your other devices (or a friend).

On browsers like Chrome and Opera, you can download an extension, like the one you see here at the top.

Every time you click on it this little window will appear

Every time you click on it this little window will appear

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

If you click on it, a little window will open.

There, you can see the four tabs: People, Devices, SMS, and Notifications.

Keep track of all your conversations inside the clipboard

Keep track of all your conversations inside the clipboard

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

The four tabs are pretty self-explanatory.

This is the Devices tab: it shows you all the devices you have signed in with Pushbullet, as well as a chat-like list of all the things you’ve pushed from one device to the other.

Here you can see that I have pushed a picture: it shows up in the “Google Pixel XL” chat, as I have transferred the .jpg file over to my phone, but also inside the “All Devices” tab, which shows you everything you push yourself from and to any device.

Push anything from anywhere on the web

Push anything from anywhere on the web

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

Here is an example of how Pushbullet integrates with the web.

If you hover over a link, for instance, simply right-click on it, follow the path, and push it wherever you want.

If you want to send the link of the current page you’re in, hit the extension button at the top right and the aforementioned little window will appear, with the link already pasted and ready to be pushed.

It’s super convenient because you don’t have to copy and paste anything yourself, and most of all you can share something without actually leaving the web page.

The device on the other end — which could be one of yours, as well as a friend of yours’ — will immediately receive a notification with the content.

If you right click on an image, they will receive a .jpg file. If you simply select some text, they will receive a notification with that text. You get the idea.

When you receive a push, it will appear as a normal notification

When you receive a push, it will appear as a normal notification

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

In this case it’s a link.

The general rule is this: Push something to a device and a notification will appear. This is a screenshot from an Android phone, but the same goes for iOS, macOS, and Windows.

A little note: If you push a link from any device to your browser, a new tab with the linked page will automatically open. It’s very handy, and most of all it’s immediate.

Pushbullet also offers a full-fledged website

Pushbullet also offers a full-fledged website

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

Pushbullet’s website is basically a glorified version of the extension’s little window.

You can see the same things, but they are of course a little more spaced out.

If it looks a bit like a messaging app, that’s because it essentially is — remember that you can push text to your Pushbullet friends. And, well, isn’t that what a messaging app does?

There are two main groups of receivers: Your own devices, and your friends

There are two main groups of receivers: Your own devices, and your friends

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

Your devices are listed individually in their own tab, but also appear separately inside the “Me” contact inside a single feed — exactly like the “All Devices” tab you saw earlier.

Keep track of individual “conversations” among any two given devices

Keep track of individual "conversations" among any two given devices

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

The “You” contact shows you the entire list of everything you have pushed yourself among your devices, but to see the individual “conversations” — in this case it’s “Chrome” and my iPod — head into the Devices tab.

The interface is exactly the same on all platforms, so you can always see what you have transferred between two individual devices, or just access to everything.

This is handy when you don’t always have all your devices with you all the time.

Think of a scenario where a friend sends you a picture on iMessage on your iPhone. You push that to your browser, and a new tab with the physical .jpg file will appear on your laptop. (This is what I did with the Strokes picture above.)

What’s cool, however, is that Pushbullet stores the push on the cloud, so in a situation like that, I can access my conversation from a third device either in the “Me” contact or “All Devices” tab. From there, I will be able to retrieve that same image from a third device.

In short, every file you push from any device instantly becomes available everywhere else, all the time, thanks to Pushbullet’s magic shared clipboard.

Get news instantly delivered to you

Get news instantly delivered to you

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

There’s also a cool “Channels” feature.

Simply follow one of the affiliated channels, and whenever some news comes up, you will receive a notification with the link.

Pushbullet lets you see — and interact with — notifications from your phone

Pushbullet lets you see — and interact with — notifications from your phone

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

Pushbullet also offers notification mirroring, so if you are on your laptop and away from your phone you will still be able to see all the notifications you receive (only if you give the app access to, of course).

If you want to make a blacklist — because, say, you would receive a native notification from another app on your laptop anyway — you can. The app is pretty flexible.

Here is a sample Gmail notification I got on my phone.

You can read it or dismiss it, but also interact with it. Gmail on Android makes you archive and reply directly from the notification, so Pushbullet offers to do the same.

However, that particular feature is part of Pushbullet Pro, a subscription service that costs either $39.99 a year or $4.99 a month.

Mirrored notification action support is the main feature of Pushbullet Pro, alongside “Universal copy & paste,” as well as priority support from the Pushbullet developers themselves.

Universal copy & paste, when active, allows you to copy anything from any of your Pushbullet-enabled devices and have it automatically copied in the clipboard of all the others, ready to be pasted.

There is also the possibility to use the website as an SMS client

There is also the possibility to use the website as an SMS client

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

The only notification mirroring Pushbullet offers for free is SMS.

This essentially turns the website into an SMS client.

There are macOS and Windows apps, but you probably shouldn’t use them

There are macOS and Windows apps, but you probably shouldn't use them

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

There is a dedicated macOS app, but I would personally not recommend it.

If you use Safari instead of Chrome, this can be a nice option, but pushbullet.com is still a better alternative.

The desktop app is identical to the site, the extension’s window and the mobile apps in terms of look, but is incredibly slow and clunky for some reason.

Pushbullet works for sharing anything from and to all your devices

Pushbullet works for sharing anything from and to all your devices

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

You won’t be using Pushbullet’s app much by itself on mobile, as the best part of it is — again — how it integrates with the system.

Whatever kind of file you can think of can be pushed from Android too.

Hit the system’s share sheet, select Pushbullet, and this nice window will appear. From there, simply select your destination and let the file upload.

Windows, macOS, Android and even iOS all have a way of accessing Pushbullet

Windows, macOS, Android and even iOS all have a way of accessing Pushbullet

Edoardo Maggio/Business Insider

The iOS app is and works pretty much the same.

Again, choose your file, image, or link, hit the share button, select Pushbullet, choose the receiving end and hit “Post.”

Download Pushbullet on any or all your devices from www.pushbullet.com.

Source: businessinsider

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