With Android OEMs following Apple and ditching the 3.5mm headphone jack on their devices, it is imperative that the process of pairing a Bluetooth device with an Android phone is as straightforward as possible. To make that possible, Google today announced Fast Pair.
Fast Pair makes uses of Bluetooth Low Energy to automatically discover nearby devices and then uses Bluetooth to pair with them. During the scanning process which requires Bluetooth and Location to be enabled on your device, Fast Pair packets will be sent to Google to help identify nearby devices and automatically download their product image, name, and other important specifications.
Once the nearby device is successfully identified, a high priority Tap to Pair notification will be displayed on your device. Simply tap this notification and the nearby device will pair with your device over Bluetooth. And if there is a companion app for this device, a link to download it will also be automatically sent to your device.
Google is rolling out Fast Pair feature to all Android devices running Marshmallow or higher and running Google Play Services 11.7+. The bummer here is that only a limited set of Bluetooth devices support Fast Pair and this protocol is not compatible with all the existing Bluetooth devices you already own. For now, only the Pixel Buds, Plantronics Voyager 8200 and Libratone Q Adapt On-Ear support Fast Pair. Google is encouraging accessory makers who use Bluetooth to reach out to it to add Fast Pair support to their devices.
[Via Android Developers]