Wednesday, December 5, 2012

ActivePrint Pro: Printing from the road

ActivePrint Pro: Printing from the road -

ActivePrint (US$3.99) represents a new and intriguing entry into the AirPrint arena. In its natural state, Apple's AirPrint service allows you to wirelessly print documents from your iOS device to an AirPrint-enabled printer on the same network.

We at TUAW have long been big fans of Printopia, a utility that extends AirPrint to any standard printer, not just those with AirPrint capabilities. ActivePrint promises a way to move beyond local networks, so you can print from the road as well as at the office or home.

It works by hosting a Windows or OS X application on your desktop computer. You register the application by your email address (and opt out of promotional emails), and receive a PIN to use. On iOS, you add the address and PIN into the ActivePrint client and you're ready to start printing -- whether you're at home or halfway across the world.

Unlike Printopia and similar products like FingerPrint and handyPrint, which offer wireless printing from any iOS application, you do need to run a separate client on your iOS device. You export data from native apps over to the printing one. iOS's "Open in" system enables you to copy data for printing.

Although the app promotes Dropbox, SkyDrive and support, it basically tells you to download those clients, and use "Open in" to transfer data. A special "activeprint://" URL scheme lets you transfer web page addresses to the app but it's a bit frustrating to use. As you can see, the interface is pretty cluttered for what should be a simple utility ...

(Via The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW).)

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