Is mobile printing the wave of the future?

2. November 2012 06:00 by Calvin Yu in Technology News  //  Tags:   //   Comments

Mobile printing You don't have to be a techie to know how popular mobile devices have become. These days, it seems like practically everyone has a smartphone or a tablet. The popularity of handheld mobile devices shouldn't slow down anytime soon. In fact, experts predict that the total number of mobile devices that are in use will at least double over the next three to five years. It seems only natural that the demand for mobile printing will grow right along with it. Although some people say that digital documents are making printing obsolete, the truth is that there will always be a need for hard copies. Find out why mobile printing is sure to increase in popularity below.

More Mobile Devices will Produce Greater Demand for Mobile Printing

When mobile devices first started growing in popularity, those who used them didn't have a pressing need to be able to print from them. After all, most people continued to use laptops and PCs along with their smartphones and tablets. As mobile technology improves, however, more and more people are turning away from PCs and laptops in favor of mobile devices. That's not to say that desktop PCs and laptops will become obsolete, but it does mean that there is a more pressing need for mobile printing.

New Software Simplifies the Process of Printing from Mobile Devices

There are plenty of workarounds for printing documents from a mobile device. For example, you can take a document from a smartphone or tablet and send it to your email address. From there, log onto that email address from a laptop or a desktop and print your document. This technique works, but it's hardly convenient. It comes as no surprise that many companies are developing software that addresses this issue.

HP ePrint Software Paves the Way

One of the first programs that was specifically designed to address mobile printing was HP's ePrint software. This software is included with many HP printers. It assigns a specific email address to the HP printer. Users can then send documents from their smartphones and tablets directly to the printer. It eliminates several steps from the process that is highlighted above. However, its main limitation is that it only allows users to print documents to one printer. The good news is that it's compatible with popular email programs like Gmail and supports file formats like PDFs and Excel spreadsheets.

Will There be Less Demand for Mobile Printing?

Some folks believe that the ease of sharing and sending digital documents and photos is going to eliminate the need for printing. However, several things suggest otherwise. For one thing, people who have mobile devices and are able to print form them easily, typically do twice as much printing as people who have standard PCs and laptops. In other words, if the process of mobile printing is simplified and readily available, people will happily put it to use. Software companies are aware of this fact, which is precisely why so many new programs are being developed.

Mobile Printing is Sure to Grow

For all intents and purposes, mobile devices and technology are only just hitting their stride. Now that they have become commonplace, the next logical step is to enhance and improve mobile printing technology. That process is well underway, so you can expect to see many more devices that are compatible with popular printers. Before too long, printing a document or photo from your smartphone or tablet should be quick, easy and efficient. When that happens, there's sure to be a major uptick in the number of people who engage in mobile printing.   

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