iPad as a printer replacement

Discussion in 'iPad General Discussions' started by omro, May 19, 2010.

  1. omro
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    omro iPF Novice

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    Hi,

    I'm thinking of using my iPad as a printer replacement option - to offset the cost of purchase by using it to print my documents to and also to try and be a little eco friendly - if that's possible - by not using up paper and toner/ink as often.

    I used to have a large format eBook reader, the iRex DR1000. I could print files to a PDF on my Mac and then simply copy them to the DR1000 via USB or SD and read the "printouts" on there. This device unfortunately met a sticky end and thanks to my house insurance, I am buying an iPad to replace it - though I do have to contribute some of my own money towards it!!

    Has anyone got any innovative and fast ways of using their iPad as a printer replacement?
  2. NumbLock
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    NumbLock iPad Ninja

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    Me too. I have a lot of PDF files that I often print and browse at my desk. I want to do away with that completely.
  3. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    Omro,

    Interesting... I assume you'll be doing this from home or office. A place with WiFi available. Am I correct?
  4. cimousa
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    cimousa Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    Hmmm that's an interesting concept. We'd love to hear an update soon on how it's going.
  5. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    LOL Cimousa, I too am intrigued. My head's moving through several scenarios now. I may try to make a rough solution for this.

    Regards,
  6. omro
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    omro iPF Novice

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    My iPad hasn't arrived yet, due the 28th, so this is all theoretical.

    The DR1000 was straight forward, you plugged it into the computer via USB, it showed up as a hard disk and you copied the PDF "printout", disconnected and read the PDF. Or took out the SD card and slotted that into the computer and repeated the above.

    As I understand how the iPad works, you can't plug it in and have a similar space show up.

    I'm hearing about a program called DropBox which might allow me to sync a printouts folder on the computer with the iPad and then open the files in a PDF reader.

    Alternatively I would have to email the "printouts" to the iPad, which does require wifi access.

    Luckily I should never need this outside of an office/home environment where wifi is available.

    Will also look into some kind of bluetooth sync, maybe.
  7. omro
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    omro iPF Novice

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    Awesome, think out loud. I'm really intrigued by this idea. It used to work well enough on the DR1000, though the eInk limitations were a little tedious to live with. Am hoping that the iPad screen improves upon this.

    MobileRead Wiki - IRex Digital Reader

    This is the device I had. The screen size is comparable with the iPad. However the versatility of the iPad has it beaten hands down. Plus the software implementation of the DR1000 left a lot to be desired. However, for the sheer simplicity of printing to PDF and copying to the device and reading printouts, it was hard to beat.
  8. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    Ya, I've almost got it working now using drop box. Funny I was thinking of a few methods... I was thinking about have the pad acces a shared folder over a local network or network share that you could joint through the browser.

    Looks like drop box will be much nicer. You'll just have to manage your files so that you don't exceed your file storage limit. I'll do a write-up with screenshots soon showing how I'm doing it.

    Great idea, keep thinking out loud!
  9. omro
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    omro iPF Novice

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    That would be great! I'm soooo looking forward to getting my iPad and being as productive as possible with it!

    btw I like your site, though the link in your footer doesn't work properly.
  10. Finnedog
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    Finnedog iPad Fan

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    Try Evernote, you send an email with attached pdf to an email address that Evernote gives you. The pdf then shows up as an icon in Evernote, you can sort them into as many folders as you want and share it with people and drop all kinds of files into it. Although it is hard to edit things you put on with a PC with the iPad. can access all the files from any computer with internet access.
    Last edited: May 19, 2010
  11. Ridgeline
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    Ridgeline iPF Noob

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    I am using Dropbox and the new update will even export pics from drop box into your albums on ipad if you so choose. also it is nice because you can view all the files you need to without taking up space on the ipad. I currently have 2.5gb for free from them so the service for a free service is top notch and easy to sync with multiple computers as well. I save a file at work to my dropbox and can access it anywhere. when I turn on my laptop it downloads instantly. The ipad allows for viewing but if it is a document and you need to edit it and have a program to do so such as numbers it will let you. such a sweet app can't go wrong and its free to boot.
  12. rowan
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    rowan iPad Fan

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    If you're saying you simply what to Print to PDF, which the Mac print dialog box already has built-in (thanks OS X!) then just install Dropbox, set the default folder to wherever you want it, put that in the sidebar so it's always available, then print and save to that location. Nearly immediately, the file will show up on in the Dropbox folder on your iPad.

    Once you're looking at it in Dropbox on your iPad, just choose which app to open it in (using the icon in the upper right corner). On mine, it shows I can open the PDF in iAnnotate PDF or GoodReader. I usually open PDFs in iAnnotate PDF, so once it's opened in the reader app it's now on your iPad and can be deleted from your Dropbox storage.

    Note well: As of yesterday, the iPad Dropbox app is at version 1.2.1 and that's the version you want to use (this note is for people who have already installed it). It fixes a number of bugs, the most annoying being that when you open a PDF transferred via Dropbox to another app, it gets assigned a 12-digit number and loses its original name. Version 1.2.1 fixes that annoying problem (but I had to delete Dropbox, then reinstall the new version to make that little bug go away).
  13. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    The more I look at this and tinker with it the more ways I come up with it do it. :D

    Link fixed: thank you!

    Regards,
  14. omro
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    omro iPF Novice

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    You're welcome.

    List them, I'm curious. I wish I had my iPad already! I want to play with it!!
  15. stever
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    stever iPad Fan

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    GoAruna is another service App like Dropbox.

    I think they are both free, up to a certain GB storage.
    Try them both and see how you like them.
  16. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    All,
    It took me a while to try a few options before I came to this one.

    http://ipad-candy.com/print-to-ipad/

    I tired to make it as clean as possible using a soft printer and tried to get the file quickly to the PAD in a format that was easily read/displayed.
    Enjoy.
    Regards,
    Last edited: May 20, 2010
  17. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    Omro did you try it?
  18. iVan
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    iVan iPad Ninja

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    I absolutely refuse this.
    I WILL NOT send an iPad as a bill to my clients who are too stupid to buy a computing device. The cost of shipping would be prohibitive...:D

    WHAT!!!...:p
  19. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    Printing to iPad

    LOL no doubt. Send it as an end of month bill with screen captures of all the printouts in a rotating slide show! ;) that's smooth...

    You COULD however send less "things" to your printer this way and save a few bucks a year on paper. If your like me and print lots of reports, specs, and analysis work so this is great. I'm going to tweak it some with my adobe settings so that the "printer" auto names the file.

    That way i just choose print to iPad ePrinter and it shows up in my drop box.

    Anyway it was fun to workout. I hope it's helpful to someone.
  20. john
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    john iPF Novice

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    All,

    I put up a video on youtube showing how the 'print to ipad' tutorial works out... Let me know your thoughts. I've really been enjoying printing documents to the pad.

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_e6emwvRa-E]YouTube - PrintToIpad.wmv[/ame]

    Thanks,

    John

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