Printing in an Increasingly Mobile World

Posted on July 31, 2011 at 6:54 pm by Donna Warren

With all of the mobile devices we now use, printing is becoming more of a problem. Digital copies work most of the time but eventually we will need a hard copy of our data. No matter where you happen to be, dragging out a cable that can connect to both your mobile device and your printer is a pain at best and downright annoying most of the time.

So what are the currently available printing solutions for mobile users? There are two basic methods: use an existing printer or get a wireless printer.

Existing Printer

If you already have a wireless network available, set up your mobile device to use the hard wired printer in your network. It doesn’t matter if it is a network device or a shared printer on a wired PC. You just need to be able to connect to it so you can print to the printer.

To do this you need to go to the host computer (the one who acts as the print server for the printer you want to use.), right click on its name and share the printer with the everyone group on windows. Both Mac and Linux can also share printers.

Then you should be able to see the printer if you are connected to the network. Just set it up like you would any other printer. If the host does not have the correct printer driver for your device, you may have to download it and install it on the wireless device. Most of the time windows has a driver that works with most devices and will download it the first time you connect.

Wireless Printer

If you don’t have one, you will need to buy it. Wireless printers have wireless network cards built into them. Most come with software that will configure your devices to work with them. The primary thing you need is an existing wireless network that your wireless devices can talk to.

Since the printer needs to be plugged in to an electrical outlet, you will need to put it within a few feet of an outlet and within range of your wireless access point or wireless router. If you are not sure of the distance, check the box your access point or router came in or Google it.

Since most wireless routers and access points have wired ports, all of your devices can use this printer. There is no need to have two printers on your network.

Bluetooth Connections

Some printers have Bluetooth capabilities and you can use the Bluetooth on your wireless device to print even if you don’t have a wireless network available. The range of Bluetooth can vary but it is generally between 25 and 30 feet.

Comments are closed.