As of yesterday’s Google I/O 2022 keynote, Android 13 Beta 2 is official and it’s already bringing some significant changes to how phones share photos with a Chromebook. That’s based on recent reports stemming from users who noted the change.
Going far beyond the announced improvements to message sharing, the new update allows a phone and Chromebook to be integrated. Namely, by not only sharing recent websites, messages, and unlocking — as pairing currently does. But also by allowing recent photos captured on a paired smartphone running Android 13 Beta 2 to show up on a Chromebook.
Because the new feature is part of Phone Hub, the photos appear under the phone-shaped icon on a Chromebook’s shelf. And that’s also why the toggle for the new feature appears in Phone Hub in Chromebook Settings. As shown in the images below.
That means that users can not only see their phone-captured photos or videos almost instantly on a Chromebook. They can also interact with and use that media.
Users also have control over whether media can be shared on the phone side. Once a phone is connected, a toggle appears on the phone itself.
How can you use this new Android 13 Chromebook-related feature to sync recent photos?
Now, as of this writing, most users won’t be seeing the new option. And that’s as much to do with the Chromebook being used to sync photos as with the Android 13 Beta 2 requirement.
Not only do users need the latest Beta for Android on their smartphones. They also need a Chromebook and for that gadget to be paired with their phone. Moreover, as a secondary requirement, the Chromebook in question needs to be on the developer channel as well.
That typically means going through the setup process again, once the Chromebook is returned to the Stable channel. Of course, that also happens to be something most users are likely to need to do. Since the developer channel is a beta channel for the OS and comes with plenty of bugs. But the features should arrive on the Stable channel sooner than later, now that Android 13 is ramping up for finalization.