Missing Air Drop in Lion
July 20, 2011 2 Comments
More than a few users of Apple’s newest os, Lion, have been perplexed when trying to fire up Airdrop for the first time.
Apparently Airdrop is only supported by selected airport cards; specifically the Broadcom chips.
Most older macbook’s (2008, 2009) models use a perfectly good Airport card based on the Atheros microprocessor.
For whatever reason, Apple has decided only new unibody MacBooks can enjoy the fun that is Air Drop.
The fix? Non existent! While technically speaking, air drop is simply a graphical improvement of the public shared folder that has been around since Leopard; and should be independent of hardware.
The feature I am referring to is the openly shared folder in Home/Public/Dropbox (where people on the same network can send you files if you have file sharing turned on).
This dropbox, not to be confused with the online service called dropbox, is at the core the same principle as Air Drop, though not as simple or intuitive to use.
If you ask me, Air Drop has always existed in OS X. Lion Simply makes it simpler and more attractive to use. Why only certain hardware supports this sweet new interface for sharing files is beyond me.
What are your thoughts? Is there some behind the scenes magic that only Broadcom chips support? Or is apple throwing their customers with older hardware under the bus?
The awesome program lion tweaks now has the option to enable airdrop on older hardware. Give it a try.