Guide to Wireless Printing from Your Computer and Mobile Phone

While printing dates back to the mid-15th century, wireless printing has only become commonly used in the last two decades. Wireless printing is, as the name clearly states, the ability to use a printer without a wire or a cord connecting the printer and computer. This will allow you to print from any computer within appropriate range of the printer, which will most likely be anywhere within your home. The average distance for wireless printing is approximately 100 feet, but this can vary based on the manufacturer. This wireless technology allows multiple family members to print from their personal computers to the same household printer.

3 Ways to Set Up Wireless Printing

  1. USB Cable: Many wireless printers will come with installation software and a USB cable. If you connect the printer and computer using the USB, you will be prompted to follow the installation guide setup steps. Once completed, you will be able to remove the USB and print wirelessly.

    Printer connected by a USB cable

  2. Wireless Setup Wizard: Using this method, you can setup wireless printing directly from the printer itself using either its control panel or touchscreen. You’ll need to follow a few quick steps and enter answers for questions such as the name of your wireless network and password.
  3. Wi-Fi Protected Setup: Similarly to the wireless setup wizard, you can also use this method using the printers control panel or touchscreen. If your home already has a WPS router with a push-button, after following a few printer setup steps, you will be able to push the button to activate the printer wirelessly with your computer.

Printing from personal computers is the most common form of printing and has been around almost as long as the computer itself. This form is used in offices and homes worldwide and while the printing technology has remained mostly the same, printers themselves have gotten more advanced.

The printer supply industry generates over $100 billion dollars a year. This includes not just printers, but also the ink cartridges or toner cartridges supplies. However, since smartphones and tablets hit the marketplace, the need to print from all technological forms grew as well. Since this need was growing, different mobile applications created by each leading manufacturer such as HP and Epson began emerging for both tablet and smart phone use.

What are my Options for Wireless Mobile Printing?

Regardless of the tablet or smartphone you have, there is a surplus of mobile printing apps to choose from. A few of the options you may use include Bluetooth printing, Apple AirPrint, or manufacturer applications. Allow us to highlight a few of the options:

    Apple iPhone AirPrint settings
  1. Bluetooth printing: Perhaps a more outdated technology, Bluetooth printing is primarily used with mobile phones, yet unlike Wi-Fi, your phone must be used within a few meters of the printer. This is best for phones without a Wi-Fi connection that are enabled for Bluetooth printing.
  2. Apple AirPrint: This is a great option for anyone who uses an Apple device whether an iPad or an iPhone. However AirPrint only applies to software versions 4.2 or later. There are several printers that are compatible with AirPrint including many Epson and HP models. Just locate what you would like to print on your phone, locate the print button (no application download needed), and your phones software will find all AirPrint printers in range you can print from.
  3. HP ePrint settings
  4. HP ePrint: This application can be downloaded directly from your mobile phone. The app is not only compatible with most HP printers, but is also compatible with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, photos, web pages, and more. The easy to use interface makes it simple to print documents, images, or web pages. If you have the appropriate printer and the application downloaded, make sure your printer is stocked with HP ink cartridges.
    Brother iPrint&Scan settings
  5. Brother iPrint&Scan: This app can also be downloaded directly from your mobile phone and is compatible with most Brother printers. In addition to an easy-to-use interface, the Brother app also allows you to set up scans from your smartphone and send results wirelessly to your printer. Don’t forget to fill your office or home printer with Epson ink cartridges before sending documents to print.

Printer applications have now become mainstream for most large manufacturers and have become expected by consumers. In the future, we can expect that most new smartphones will come with already enabled printing features, making the setup and installation process easier and easier. 


What is the Brother Toner Save mode?

8. August 2012 06:00 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

Printing for businesses and home-use comes with variable costs for paper, toner and cartridges. There are several ways in which users can conserve resources in order to save money, including printing on the backs of pages and utilizing electronic copies whenever possible. By taking advantage of the toner save mode in your Brother printer, users can save money on their printing needs while benefiting the environment. Other printer manufacturers name the option economy mode or draft mode.

Illustration of how many more prints you can get when toner save mode is on The toner save mode can be activated or deactivated from the printer preferences or the print dialog box. Other printer manufacturers have a button that turns on the draft mode located directly on the printer. There is an option to set this mode as default so that every job users less toner when printing. By decreasing the resolution and using fewer dots per inch, the toner save mode consumes fewer resources. This mode cuts the dpi in half to produce lighter images that are still clear. Requiring less toner causes the cartridges to last an average of 15 percent longer. Cumulative savings add up to about $25 per year.

Since this mode produces clear documents that are still readable, the applications are plentiful. Electronic receipts, rough drafts, coupons and reference material can be printed using the toner save mode without making any sacrifices. High-resolution options can be reserved for final drafts, framed photographs and important business documents. Users will save about ten percent of their toner when printing single or bulk jobs with this economy mode.

Businesses and personal users will not have to replace the Brother toner cartridges as often, and this conservation of resources saves even more time by reducing the frequency of ordering replacements from us. The utilization of fewer resources also reduces the environmental impact of everyday printing. High-resolution images and darker lines are ideal when quality is an important factor, but for most other documents, the toner save mode is more practical and comes with the benefit of savings.

How to clean the corona wire in Brother laser printers

5. August 2012 08:00 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

The corona wire is an important component of a Brother laser printer, vital to the operation of the printer. The role of the corona wire is to transfer the toner onto the paper from the laser printer's imaging drum. It accomplishes this task by placing a charge onto the paper. The charge causes the paper to attract the toner to it, which allows you to complete your printing job. If the corona wire is not functioning properly, then the Brother laser printer will not work.

The most common signs of a dirty or malfunctioning corona wire include light printing jobs, illegible printing jobs or papers with spotty printing on them. The corona wire in a Brother laser printer should be cleaned whenever these symptoms appear or whenever the old toner cartridge is being replaced with a new one.

To clean the corona wire, first push the front release button on the Brother laser printer and, with the button depressed, pull the cover of the printer toward yourself. Once the cover is open, it will be easy to see the printer's drum and toner unit. Grasp the unit's black and yellow handle and remove it from the printer.

Corona wire on a Brother toner cartridge Next, slide the element's blue tab, slowly and carefully, to the far left side of the unit and then return it to the far right side. Repeat this sliding process three or four times. In certain Brother laser printers, the tab is green rather than blue, but this will not affect the cleaning process.

Another option is to use a small paintbrush to dust off the toner. Make sure that the paintbrush is clean and totally dry if you use this option.

You are now ready to insert the drum unit back into the laser printer. When you are doing this, be sure that the arrow on the tab lines and the arrow on the drum unit line up precisely. If the arrows do not line up, your next printing job could contain an unsightly vertical line.

To reassemble the printer, follow these steps in reverse order. This cleaning process will have your Brother laser printer and its corona wire working as good as new.

Reasons to get the portable PocketJet printer

8. July 2012 06:00 by Calvin Yu in Printer Reviews, Technology News  //  Tags: ,   //   Comments (2)

brother-pocketjet-printer For some time, mobile printing has lagged far behind mobile technology in general. There are now countless ways to stay connected with mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. Until recently, though, there was no easy way to print documents, photos and other things while on the go. With the portable PocketJet printer, that's all changed. This exceptionally convenient little printer does precisely what it is designed to do: It produces crisp, high-quality, full-sized printed pages just about anywhere. Learn more about the top advantages of this cleverly designed portable printer below.

Full-Page Printing

There's no need to settle for miniature copies when using the PocketJet printer. At just over 10 inches in length, it can easily produce full-sized copies. For this reason alone, this is an invaluable tool for business people who are constantly on the go. After all, tiny copies of important documents simply aren't going to cut it. No matter where you bring the PocketJet, you can use it to print full-sized pages on demand.

Exceptional Portability

It's easy to assume that the PocketJet printer isn't really that portable. After all, there has to be some kind of catch. However, it truly is lightweight and easy to bring along practically anywhere. It barely weighs one pound, so it doesn't add a significant amount of weight to a laptop bag or briefcase. In fact, it's so small and lightweight that it can be kept in the pocket of a jacket or blazer. There are no gimmicks involved with this incredible device.

No Ink or Toner Necessary

The last thing you want to do is put a tiny, ink- or toner-filled printer in your pocket. Spills and other mishaps are sure to happen with the consumables. That's not an issue with the PocketJet printer because it doesn't use ink or toner. Instead, it relies on direct thermal printing technology. This revolutionary technology allows you to produce a limitless number of prints without ever having to add new toner or replace an ink cartridge. This technology is the primary thing that makes this handy little printer possible. After all, toner and ink can be extremely messy, so devices that rely on them can't be taken from place to place with ease.

Fast, Efficient Wireless Printing

If you've ever had trouble printing from a regular computer to a wireless printer, you're probably skeptical about the capabilities of the PocketJet printer. However, this device uses IrDA technology, which is an infrared interface the produces reliable, exceptional wireless connectivity. It is compatible with a dizzying array of devices, so you should be able to print from your iPhone, tablet or laptop without any trouble at all. This compact little printer works amazingly well in this regard, and it will make life a lot easier for you.

Maintenance-Free Design

There are very few moving parts on the PocketJet portable printer. That's a good thing because you'll probably want to bring it everywhere with you. Because it has so few moving parts, it is extremely durable and more than capable of standing up to life on the road. There is no need to handle this printer with kid gloves.

A Highly Capable Portable Printer

The PocketJet portable printer finally addresses the pressing need for true on-the-go printing. With no ink or toner to worry about, you can avoid messes and other issues. Thanks to its compact size, you can slip it into your pocket or tuck it into your laptop bag. With its reliable wireless technology, you can avoid the frustration of being unable to connect when you need to do so. On every conceivable level, this portable printer delivers.   

How to replace your Brother toner cartridge and drum

6. April 2010 09:10 by Calvin Yu in Troubleshooting and Printer Tips  //  Tags:   //   Comments (0)

In laser printers, the drum and toner cartridge work together when printing. The toner, similar to ink, is held in the toner cartridge. When something is printed, the drum transfers that toner to the paper.  In many models, like the Brother HL-2140 toner printer, these are sold and installed as a single unit. However, this often causes both to be replaced when usually only the toner is used completely. Most Brother printers have these components separately installed in one unit in the printer, so that only the empty one needs to be replaced.

Brother HL-2140 toner printerHere are the steps to replacing either the drum or toner cartridge on a Brother printer.

  1. Turn off the printer
  2. Set some scrap paper near the printer. Toner may leak from the toner. This is to protect anything that leaking toner might stain.
  3. Open the front cover.
  4. Firmly pull the drum and cartridge unit from the printer. Be careful to watch for leaking toner that might drip. Do not touch the electrode, otherwise static electricity may cause damage.
  5. Separate the drum and the toner cartridge by pressing the green lever down.
  6. Set the parts on the paper.
  7. If replacing a used drum, then place the toner in a new drum. If replacing an empty toner cartridge, then snap a new cartridge to the drum.
  8. Lock the drum and toner together. If replaced properly, it can be heard locking into place and the green lever should lift automatically.
  9. Lock the drum and cartridge into the printer.
  10. Turn on the printer.
  11. Close the front cover.

The printer should automatically detect the new laser toner cartridge or drum. It is ready to print if the LED indicator goes off.

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