How To Video
Print from your smartphone using Google Cloud PrintNeed a paper document, but find yourself away from your computer? CNET's Antuan Goodwin shows you how to use a Google service to print from your smartphone.
-You're a mover and a shaker, a power user and a road warrior. You can't be weighed down by a desktop or laptop computer. You've got your trusty BlackBerry, Android, or iOS device to handle everything that you need. But what if you need to print something? I'm Antuan Goodwin with cnet.com and I'm gonna show you how to print from your smartphone with Google Cloud Print. Let me caveat this how-to by saying that at the time we're recording, you can only really print from Gmail and the Google Docs web interfaces. But that's subject to changed as the apps and the software involve in this continue to update. I can't wait for the Android hacking community to figure out ways to open this up to other services, but I'm getting a bit ahead of myself. Alright, let's get started. The first thing you'll need is a desktop or a laptop computer that's connected to a printer. Some sort of home closet server that's always on will do best, but any computer will do. You will also need Google's Chrome browser running on that computer. Make sure that it's the latest Chrome 9 or the Beta which you can get at the link below. While on the Chrome browser, hit the wrench icon in the right end of the toolbar and select options. Now, click on the tab that says under the hood and scroll to the bottom of the list of presented options. You should see a heading for Google Cloud Print. Below which will be a button that says sign in to Google Cloud Print. You know what to do next. After a quick click, you'll be presented with a sign-in screen where you'll input your Google account and username and password and then you'll be ready to go. Go ahead and print a quick test page to make sure everything is ready to go. Now, I promised you that you'd be able to print from your phone by the time this was over. So here's where things start getting interesting. On your Android, iPhone, or BlackBerry phone, head over to mail.google.com to load the Gmail mobile site. Open any e-mail and hit the downward pointing arrow on the floating action bar. You should notice a new print option among the standard ones. Tapping print will take you to the Google Cloud Print page where you should be able to choose from the printer that's connected to a computer you've just signed in. Select the printer, hit print, and then collect your document when you return to the printer next. There's no smell like freshly lasered paper and toner. Sorry. Google Docs' web interface works similarly, so you can print longer documents, share it with the service in a pinch just by pulling out your phone. You could also add multiple computers to your Google Cloud Print account. So go ahead and connect your work computer, your home computer, and maybe, your mom's computer for a maximum printing flexibility. Well, there you have it. You can now amaze your friends and family with your new availability to print from wherever you happened to be. Check out CNET TV for even more how-to videos. I'm Antuan Goodwin with cnet.com showing you how it's done.