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Phone-bonker Bump tells desktop users: We swing both ways now

Just press that button and your PC will give up the goods

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Bump, the utility for transferring files between phones with a tap, can now invite desktop computers into the bilateral relationship by bashing the space bar to swap data.

To swap files with a PC it will need an open browser, but then you just select the file to be shared in either direction and transfer starts with a tap of the handset onto the space bar. That tap starts the upload, while downloading requires another click on the receiving device, but it does all work without needing to install client software on the PC or muck about with cables.

Bump is an enormously complicated solution to emulate the functionality which Near Field Communications (NFC) enables, without needing NFC hardware. NFC uses a short-range radio signal to handshake between devices, resorting to Bluetooth or Wi-Fi Direct to transfer files. Bump's solution is a little more involved as the app detects the bumping motion and sends time/location data to the company's server. The server matches the pair and forwards the file from one party to the other, achieving the same thing without NFC hardware, though network connectivity is required of both parties.

In use it works as advertised: install the mobile app and it populates the Android "sharing" menu so it can be accessed from other applications including the Gallery and file manager, allowing files to be uploaded to any computer visiting the specially-designed website.

Graphics will be resized - and reduced down for quick downloading, which is annoying - though other files we tested worked fine, including multiple megabytes of video and audio, and the lack of client software on the PC makes it an easy app to install and keep handy for when one wants to share a file.

Handy, but not essential - one probably wouldn't pay for it, so Bump makes money creating custom versions of its technology to enable pay-by-bonk (attacking NFC's most viable business) and other applications based around the core technology, while giving away the handy client software for free. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

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