Designed to fill the gap between smartphones and laptops, the iPad is marketed as a mini computer that's fun to use when it comes time to get some work done. And, if you're using their iWork suite of iPad apps, including Keynote, Pages, and Numbers this may be true. But there a few things that stand out as big reminders that the iPad is not a laptop and doesn't really function well as a computer. One of the most noticeable pitfalls comes when you try to print from the iPad. As in, there's no easy way to print from the iPad.
Thankfully, just as they did with the iPhone, developers have already released a hefty list of apps that make printing with your iPad easier. We haven't had a chance to test them all yet, but here are 5 of our favorite printer apps. Which iPad app do you use for printing? Leave a comment and we'll check it out!
PrintCentral. EuroSmartz. $9.99. Rating 9/10 This app will let you print basically anything from basically anywhere. With PrintCentral you can print wirelessly from iPad to any printer that's connected to your computer — regardless of whether it's WiFi, bluetooth or USB. Of course, for around 10 bucks we expect more than the ability to print from our iPad. PrintCentral has plenty of other features: mount your iPad as an external hard drive; view docs from your iPad stored on your home computer, sent by email, virtually from the cloud; print directly from supported apps. If you want to print Internet web pages, Google Maps, SMS messages, or your contacts' information, you can easily do it with this app.
Print Magic. Wellala, Inc. $6.99. Rating 8/10 Designed for iPhone and compatible with iPad, this app will print web pages, text, and images without the fuss of installing additional software. Print Magic works with all HP printers and many OEM printers (Epson, Brother, Canon, etc). This app is a good choice for people who want easy printing without a lot of frills.
ePrint. Microtech Corp. $2.99. Rating 7/10 This is a budget-friendly printer application that can print web pages, downloaded images, and even PDF files. ePrint offers several printing formats, including some photo-friendly options like border and time stamps. However, don't expect a full-featured printing app for three bucks. While ePrint is compatible with iPad, it doesn't support document sharing so you won't be able to print directly from your other apps. If money is an issue, ePrint will work with a few extra steps.
iPrint. Epson. Free. Rating 8/10 If you've got an Epson printer, then downloading the official Epson printer app may seem like a no brainer. While this app is great at what it does, the downside is that it's ONLY great at what it does. iPrint is designed to print only photos. You can also only print via Wi-Fi, not through the 3G connection. The upside is that there are no drivers to install, and printing your mobile photos has never been easier, and it's free. Can't argue with free.
ACTPrinter. Houdah Software. $0.99. Rating 8/10 One of these apps is not like the others. ACTPrinter is a virtual printer — more like a reverse printer for your iPad. Instead of printing from computer to paper, ACTPrinter "prints" from your computer right onto your iPad screen. It's an easy way to carry temporary information like shopping lists, coupons, addresses, to-do reminders etc. Save paper by "printing" to iPad. Where else can you find eco-friendly printing for under a dollar?