Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Why Can't we Print From Our Smart Phones?

Image credit: Databazaar blog
Now I know there are apps you can buy on the iOS App Store and in the Android Marketplace that will let you print from your phone, but why isn't it built into the operating system itself?  If smart phones are the next phase in evolution for computers, it should be a standard function.

Now honestly I admit, the need for me to print something from my phone doesn't popup very often, but when it does it becomes an issue.  Not enough of an issue to buy an app, but enough to make me wonder why this hasn't been solved by now.  I do have some theories why I think this is a feature that hasn't become a standard yet.  Hit the read link to see what they are.

For Apple It's All About Design

I think the initial reason users have not been able to print from their iPhones is because Apple never saw a valid reason why a user would want to.  The iPhone is portable and from Apple's point of view a user just wouldn't ever need to print anything, they could just bring their phone with them.  However that point of view changed once Apple released the iPad.  Since the iPad is meant to mimic a laptop more then a smartphone, Apple had to add in some kind of print functionality in iOS 4.2.  Though they seem to be having a bit of trouble with that.

Let Somebody Else Do It Says Google 

In regards to Android I think the explanation is very simple, Google just believes it's better left to somebody else.  Google has taken this stance with many things in regards to Android.  The most talked about example is Android's stock media player.  When Google has been asked in the past why they don't update the media player, they say they just believe someone could make a better one and users can pick the one they want on the marketplace.  With printing, I think Google is going to take the same stance.

RIM, You Should Be Embarrassed

With the BlackBerry, RIM should really be ashamed.  Since the BlackBerry is the business person's platform of choice, this should really be a built in function of the OS.  I just think it hasn't made it in there yet because RIM isn't exactly the fastest when it comes to making timely, or any for that matter, updates to their OS.  Maybe someday this will happen.

What do you guys think, will we ever see full support for printing built into mobile operating systems?  Or is printing just a dying function that no one will care about in a few years?  Go Green!!!


  1. Google's working on it:

  2. Seems like a pretty good solution for all mobile platforms. Hurry up and get it done Google.