Why does it seem impossible to get AirDrop to work between my MacBook Air (running Mountain Lion) and an iPhone? We can get things to work between iPhones, and between MacBooks, but the iPhones can't see the MacBooks and vice versa. My friend says this is something Apple has done intentionally, but I can't figure out why Apple would go out of their way to make it hard to interoperate within the Apple ecosystem. Please tell us the setting we are missing. I will happily type the longest most arcane command into a Terminal to get this working.
With iOS 8 and OS X 10.10 Yosemite, you can share files over AirDrop between Mac and iOS.
With Mavericks and earlier, and iOS 7, this is not possible. AirDrop on iOS only works with "other nearby iOS 7 devices", and AirDrop on OS X only works "between supported Wi-Fi-enabled Macs" and they must "click the AirDrop icon on their computers".
iOS: Using AirDrop details the inability to share cross-platform:
AirDrop on OS X is detailed in OS X: Can I use AirDrop with my computer? and OS X Mountain Lion: Share your files with others near you (emphasis mine):
AirDrop on iOS is detailed in iOS: Using AirDrop (emphasis mine):