Printing from a Smart Phone is Easy

It’s one of the rules of modern life that the printer will run out of ink only when the thing you are printing is urgent and you don’t have time to get more ink. This just happened to me.

As I was printing forms I needed to take to my daughter’s doctor’s appointment, my office printer coughed out its last faded page and insisted it had no more ink for the last – and most relevant page. I like to order replacement ink from Amazon because it takes two seconds, I get a good price, and the ink just shows up. But we were on the way to this appointment. No time for that.

I remembered that HP had been pressing me to try its ePrint app. (Just search your app store for HP ePrint.) No time like the present, I thought. I grabbed my Galaxy Note 2, hit the Android Play marketplace and downloaded the app. It did a quick search and found several options nearby: A FedEx store four miles away, the UPS store down the street, and a local print shop. It also informed me that the wireless printer downstairs in the homework room – the one I’d given my kids and that they had been insisting was broken for months — was also good to go.

I sent the forms to that printer right from my phone, then I ran down the stairs and unplugged the printer and plugged it back in. (In my experience, a wireless printer needs to be restarted a lot.) Seconds later, I had my forms and we were on our way. My son gaped at me: I’d just gotten my phone to print from a printer he couldn’t get to work from his computer. I shrugged and gave him a hug. It’s always good to keep the myth of Super Geek Mom alive. So I said nothing and just took my daughter to her appointment. We were on time. And I’d fixed the kid’s printer in time for school. Check. And check.

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