We’re just weeks away from proper printing directly from your iPad, thanks to the upcoming iOS 4.2 upgrade. So far, the only means of printing anything from your iPad is to sync it with your Mac and print from there. But let’s get real. If an extra step was something we were used to, we’d be PC users.
iOS 4.2 makes iPad printing simple. Here’s how it will work.
You’ve got your printer ready to go, your genuine Canon ink cartridges just installed and the paper tray is full. From inside any print-friendly app on your iPad (Photos, Pages, Mail, etc.), you’ll find the option to print is already available from the main menu. (Of course, third-party apps will have to be updated by the publisher that printing will be an option in their apps, but that’s a given, right?) When you tap “Print,” a submenu will slide open asking you which printer you want to send the document to (if there’s more than one wireless printer on your network), and how many copies you want to make.
iOS 4.2’s new dock at the bottom of the screen is where all of your multitasking options are, and the dock is also where you’ll find an icon that lists all of the print jobs that are currently pending. Tap on the icon and a new window slides open that shows you all of the pending jobs. Should you need to cancel a job, this is where you’ll do it.
Now obviously, you’ll need a wireless or networked printer — meaning you’ll have to use either a shmancy wifi-enabled printer, or a standard printer that’s tethered to a network device, like your iMac or MacBook.