Yes - you heard me right. Printing through a mobile phone. How do I do that?
I wanted to take a few minutes to share with you an experimental/beta service that allows users to share, store, and print documents easily using your mobile phone.
It is called CloudPrint and it was developed by HP Labs. Perhaps you don't always carry around your laptop, but probably always carry around your mobile phone. Perhaps you received an e-mail on your Blackberry or browsed an interesting article on the web? If you could only print it instead of viewing it on that tiny mobile phone screen!
In the past, you would have tried to figure out how to email a copy of the document to your notebook or synch up you phone to another mobile device. And forget about trying to directly print from a mobile phone directly to a printer (although hp has developed some phone-specific solutions for Nokia).
With CloudPrint, you can take your mobile phone to any networked printer and "print" your documents. There is no need to synch up - just receive them from the "Internet Cloud" and print them to a local printer. There are several interesting use models:
- Print email attachments, data or Web pages from your mobile device. Send what you want to print to the CloudPrint virtual print server. The server stores a copy and sends an SMS to your device with a reference ID. When you enter the code on the CloudPrint site, the server converts your data to a PDF, ready to print.
- Print documents stored on the CloudPrint virtual server. Before you travel, download the CloudPrint driver to your PC and save files to the server. The server sends your laptop or mobile device a unique code for each file. When you're on the road, enter the code to CloudPrint, and you're ready to print.
- Can't find a printer? CloudPrint’s online Find a Printer service can help you locate one nearby. The service also lets you print files – even vacation photos you shoot with your camera phone –back to your home or office printer (I am sure the boss will like that) or that of a friend.
Go ahead and give the service a try an tell me what you think.