handyPrint is a Mac app that lets you print wirelessly from the iPad (or iPhone) to just about any printer, even legacy printers that don’t support AirPrint.
If you’re tired of looking for which printers will work with Apple’s AirPrint and allow you to print wirelessly from the iPad, there’s a nifty little app that will let you print to just about any printer, even if they don’t support AirPrint: handyPrint by Netputing.
I’ve written before about this superb app, but it has recently been renamed, so I thought it’s worth a new post. This app used to be known as AirPrint Activator. It still does all the same things and is just as incredibly simple to use as ever under its new handyPrint name. It’s literally a one click solution.
Here are the details on the capabilities and requirements of handyPrint:
V3.1 of handyPrint™ run on your Mac to share local and network attached printers to an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch running iOS 4.2 or newer. handyPrint™ make all locally shared printers available via AirPrint. If it is shared by your Mac it will be advertised.
AirPrint is Apple’s service for wireless printing from the iPad and iOS devices. The service makes it simple and quick to print from any application to supported printers via AirPrint from your iPad.
The list of supported printers used to be very short and used to include only one big manufacturer – Hewlett Packard (or HP). The list has been growing slowly but steadily and has been updated this month – Samsung printers have been added, bringing the list of supported manufacturers up to six. Here’s a bit more detail on which types of printer from which vendors are supported by AirPrint:
Hewlett Packard: 47 printers supported including printers from these series: Deskjet, Envy, Laserjet, Laserjet Pro, Officejet, Officejet Pro, Photosmart, Photosmart E, Photosmart Plus, Photosmart Premium, Photosmart Wireless, and Topshot Laserjet Pro.
Epson: 60 printers supported including printers from these series: Artisan, EP, ME Office, PX, Stylus, Stylus Office, Stylus Photo, Workforce, Workforce WF, WP, and XP.
This looks like quite a handy option for painless, no setup iPad and iOS printing. It’s the new xPrint Server Home Edition from Lantronix. It’s a very simple, plug and play solution for getting your iOS devices printing.
The promo video is very nicely done – I love the bit where the little girl tells the mom ‘this is ridiculous’.
Here’s a little bit about the xPrint Server Home Edition, via the Lantronix press release for it:
The xPrintServer: Open it. Plug it in. Print!
The xPrintServer Family is an easy-to-use hardware solution that utilizes the iOS native print menu and requires no additional applications, software downloads, or printer driver installations. With automatic printer discovery and no configuration, printing is hassle-free. Simply open the box, plug in power, attach a USB printer and print — wirelessly from any iOS device running iOS version 4.2 or later, to virtually any USB or network-connected printer.
Today there’s news that HP had added support for the iOS AirPrint feature to eight of their Laserjet models. AirPrint is the feature added in the iOS 4.2 update that lets users print to wireless printers directly from the iPad and other iOS devices running iOS 4.2 or greater.
Here’s the list of printers that HP has added AirPrint support for: HP LaserJet P1102w Printer, HP LaserJet P1606dn Printer, HP LaserJet Pro CP1025nw Color Printer, HP LaserJet Pro M1212nf MFP, HP LaserJet Pro M1213nf MFP, HP LaserJet Pro M1214nfh MFP, HP LaserJet Pro M1216nfh MFP, HP LaserJet Pro M1217nfw MFP.
AirPrint should be a great feature, and it would be if it had been released as Apple originally touted it – offering near universal support for printing, including the ability to print to any shared printer on a local WiFi network. But by the time iOS 4.2 was released AirPrint had been badly hobbled. Sadly, even seven months after the 4.2 release, AirPrint is still a lame shell of what it was pitched as.
After seven months of AirPrint being an active feature, here’s a quick scoreboard check on it:
Total Printers supported: 27
Total Printer Manufacturers Supported: 1
27 printers and one manufacturer (HP). So much for universal support. Of course, there are some easy and effective (unofficial) ways to get AirPrint working with just about any printer.
Last night I saw a question on an iPad forum – asking whether it was possible to print from an iPad via Airprint while out and about, away from a home network. I don’t believe this is possible with AirPrint currently – if any of you know how this can be done please share details in the comments. The question made me curious though, and I immediately thought of a couple very good 3rd party printing apps I have on my iPad.
One of those is Print Central – and sure enough when I looked at its feature list at its App Store page I saw this item: Print remotely via 3G/EDGE. I honestly hadn’t even noticed this feature before, and decided to give it a test run yesterday. The test was successful. Remote printing over 3G worked without a hitch for me, after just a minimal bit of setup.
Read on for the quick details on how this works …
There are lots of reports over the last couple of days about how Apple may be cutting down the originally promised functionality of the new AirPrint feature in iOS 4.2. Originally, AirPrint was touted as allowing you to print from your iOS device to local wireless printers as well as any printer shared on a Mac or Windows PC.
Now, as you can see in the screenshot above taken from Apple’s page on iOS 4.2 for the iPad, there’s no more mention of shared printers, only those on a wireless network.
If it proves true that Apple is removing the shared printers support from AirPrint, that makes it a far less useful feature right away. Not everyone has access to a wireless printer, and if shared printers are not supported it will render the feature useless for many people. There are even third party apps available right now for the iPad that support shared printers – which knocks even more gloss off AirPrint if it comes out supporting only wireless printers.
News via: MacStories via Macgasm
Printer Pro is another good ‘all-rounder’ type printing app for the iPad. I say all-rounder because it is not tied to a particular make of wireless printer and is capable of printing a broad range of different document types and from various popular apps and services. It can print directly to many Wi-Fi printers and to any printer attached to your Mac or PC via a helper application installed on your computer.
It has similar set of features to Print Central, which I mentioned in an earlier article on printing from the iPad.
Oh, and just in case you thought you need to wait for Apple’s release of iOS 4.2 for the iPad for printing to work, check that article out – because printing already works very well on the iPad with its current (3.2.2) operating system version.
Now, on to some thoughts on Printer Pro …
Most of you may be well aware of the fact stated in this post’s title – but I get asked this a lot and see lots of people talking about how it’s not possible to print from the iPad.
So I thought I’d do a quick post to confirm that yes, you absolutely can print from the iPad – and in fact if you have the right type of printer and a decent app, wireless printing from the iPad works very well.
I’m no expert on this subject (yet ) but I’ve been giving it a go at home with a couple of wireless printers – and finding that it’s quite easy if your setup is right.