Cliqz Connect: Send tabs and videos from desktop to mobile

We explain step-by-step how to connect your desktop and mobile browser.

Björn GreifEditor

[Update from February 21, 2020: The Connect feature has been removed due to performance issues. But we are already working on a better and more stable solution.]

With Connect, you can easily connect your desktop and mobile browser by scanning a QR code. Unlike synchronization features in other browsers, Connect does not require a user account and no data is routed through a third-party server. Instead, we use a peer-to-peer method: The mobile device serves as a synchronization server. This keeps your data and privacy protected.

Once the pairing is active, you can send an open web page from your desktop to your mobile device. You can also download a YouTube video from your desktop straight to your Android smartphone or tablet. The first version of this feature is available for Cliqz for Desktop (Windows, macOS) and Cliqz for Android. Support for Cliqz for iOS will follow in the future.

Connected devices communicate with each other until you remove the connection. So you don’t have to pair them again each time you want to send a website or a YouTube video from your desktop to your mobile device. However, you should ensure that both devices have access to the internet and the mobile device is active, i.e. not in sleep mode.

Easy set up in four steps

  1. Open Cliqz for Desktop and click on the three-stripes icon in the upper right corner to open the browser menu. Select “Connect” from the menu. This will open the Connect settings page that shows a QR code.
  1. Run the Cliqz Browser on your mobile device. Open the triple-dot menu and select “Connect”.
  1. Tap on the plus icon in the lower right corner to open the QR code scanner. Place the QR code inside the viewfinder rectangle to scan it.
  1. If the scan was successful, both devices are now connected. The connected state will be displayed on the Connect settings page on desktop and on the mobile device.

Send open tabs from desktop to mobile

While your desktop and mobile browsers are connected, you can send websites from your computer to your smartphone or tablet. This is easily done using the context menu: just right-click on the web page and select “Send to mobile” from the menu to open the page in a new tab on the connected Android device. This comes in handy, for example, if you start reading an article at home and want to continue reading it while on the move.

Download YouTube videos from desktop to mobile

In February, we added a Video Downloader to the Cliqz Browser. In combination with Connect, you can open YouTube clips on your desktop computer and download them straight to your mobile device. When you open a YouTube page in Cliqz for Desktop a video icon appears next to the URL bar. Click on the video icon to open a drop-down menu. If your desktop and mobile devices are already connected, you can select “Send to mobile” at the bottom of the menu to start the download. If there is no connection yet, the option is greyed out. The size of the download is also shown in the Video Downloader menu. After successful download, you will see a confirmation, otherwise a prompt to try again.

Before a long flight or a train ride, for example, you can download a few videos to your smartphone and then watch them offline en route. To keep the memory consumption as low as possible, the videos are always downloaded at the lowest available resolution. This is completely sufficient for most smartphone displays. Normally, the clips are available in container format MP4 with 360p. They are stored in the default media folder of your mobile device. Please note that downloading via a mobile connection will affect your data volume. Therefore, it is recommended to download longer videos using a Wi-Fi connection.

Additional features are in development

You can remove the connection between desktop and mobile device in the Connect settings of Cliqz for Desktop or Cliqz for Android. In the desktop version, you only have to click on “Disconnect”. In Cliqz for Android, you go to the Connect submenu, click on the three dots behind the entry “Cliqz Desktop Browser” and select “Remove”.

With the elimination of a user account and external servers, Cliqz breaks new ground in data transmission between devices. And there are many other features planned: In the future, we want to enable synchronization of bookmarks and history via our peer-to-peer method. We will also provide a way to connect one mobile device to multiple desktop computers. This will allow you to send web content to your smartphone or tablet from both your workstation and your home computer. Additionally, it will be possible to transfer URLs directly from the search results menu to mobile devices.