How to print wirelessly from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch

Print things out from the comfort of your iOS device using AirPrint, even if you don't own an AirPrint-compatible printer.

Some say that printers are soon to be extinct. Others rant about their hate for the dead-tree format. And most recently, research has shown that printer companies are, in fact, experiencing a slow and steady demise .

But if you're a student, connoisseur of Pinterest printables, or just appreciate hard copies, the printer still holds a very important place in your home or office.

Thing is, you might not necessarily be at your desktop computer when you realize the need to print something out. If more of your time is spent on your iOS device, like an iPhone or iPad, there's good news: you can print wirelessly from your device to your printer with a native feature called AirPrint.

Set up your printer

Is your printer AirPrint-compatible?
Either way, you'll be able to use AirPrint, but if your printer is AirPrint-compatible, the setup will be easier. Go to this Apple support page and see if your printer is listed as one of the compatible devices.

If YES, then:
Well, aren't you lucky? Your AirPrint setup is very simple. Connect your iOS device and printer to the same Wi-Fi network. As far as the setup goes, you're done.

To test the connection, open up a note in the native Notes app. Hit the action button (the square with the arrow) and select "Print." Your printer should appear as the selected device. If not, tap the Printer field, allow your device to scan, and tap the printer name when it appears.

Hit Print, and your note should be sent to the printer almost immediately. The transfer speed will vary depending on your Wi-Fi network, but you'll likely find that it's surprisingly fast.

If NO, then:
If your printer is not AirPrint-compatible, don't fret. Fingerprint (available for Windows and Mac) is a program that runs in the background and works by tricking your iOS device into thinking that any printer connected to your desktop is AirPrint-compatible.

1. Download and install Fingerprint. The complete license is $20 -- a lot cheaper than a new printer -- but if you want to test-drive it first, use the free trial. (Be warned, though, that the program will overlay a watermark if you don't purchase a license.)

2. Launch Fingerprint, which can be found in the Windows taskbar or your Mac's top menu. In the left sidebar you'll see a list of installed printers. Check the ones with which you want your iOS device to work. Close the window.

3. Connect your computer and iOS device to the same Wi-Fi network. Your setup is now complete.

To test the connection, open up a note in the native Notes app. Hit the action button (the square with the arrow) and select "Print." Your printer should appear as the selected device. If not, tap the Printer field, allow your device to scan, and tap the printer name when it appears.

Hit Print, and your note should be sent to the printer almost immediately. The transfer speed will vary depending on your Wi-Fi network, but you'll likely find that it's surprisingly fast.

Just remember: For this setup to work, your computer must stay powered on and connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your iOS device(s).

AirPrint-enabled apps

Apple
With AirPrint set up, you can now print almost anything you see on your iOS device. Photos, maps, Web pages, and even content from third-party apps can be sent to your printer wirelessly. Here's a list of just a few of the useful AirPrint-ready apps:
  • Google Maps. Print out maps and driving directions.
  • Instapaper. Get a hard copy of an article or blog.
  • Evernote. Any of your notes can be printed out.
  • Safari. Print an entire Web page using the action button at the top of the browser.
  • iWork. Get paper versions of any Keynote, Pages, and Numbers.
  • How to Cook Everything. Print recipes and shopping lists from this iPad cooking app.
 

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