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How to print with an Android phone using Wi-Fi, USB, or Bluetooth?

The essentials for printing with an Android phone using Wi-Fi, USB, or Bluetooth

It is possible to print from an Android phone using an internet box:

  • Through the printer or smartphone manufacturer's applications.
  • Using Google Cloud Print.

To print with an Android phone without internet, you need to:

  • Use a printer compatible with Wi-Fi Direct.
  • Connect via USB or Bluetooth.

With the technological advances that smartphones have seen in recent years, more and more French people no longer own or use a computer. However, it is often necessary to print documents, whether it be supporting documents to create a file, photographs, or tickets for an event, for example.

Many consumers therefore need to print directly from their Android phone or tablet. The process is often far from easy, so it is legitimate to wonder how to print documents or photos with an Android device. Different techniques are possible, using Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or simply through a USB connection. In this help page, you will find everything you need to know about printing via an Android phone.


Wi-Fi printing from an Android phone: several possible solutions when you have an internet router

When you want to print a document from your Android smartphone, whether it's a Samsung, Huawei, or Sony, for example, the most obvious solution is to use Wi-Fi. Nowadays, most printers are compatible with this wireless technology, making it relatively easy to use this solution, if available. However, in order to use this technology, it is necessary to have an internet router.

How to print from an Android phone using Wi-Fi?

It is relatively easy to use Wi-Fi for printing with an Android phone. However, there are a few prerequisites that need to be fulfilled. Several can be mentioned.

  • Having a printer compatible with Wi-Fi and having an Android application. Many brands offer such devices, including HP, Brother, Samsung, Lexmark, Canon, Epson, and Xerox.
  • Having an Android smartphone, be it Samsung, Huawei, Sony, or others.
  • Having an internet box delivering a Wi-Fi network and connecting both the Android phone and the printer to it. All internet boxes can be used, including those using the 4G mobile network.

If the user meets these three prerequisites, they can then follow the procedure below to print from their Android phone via Wi-Fi. There is also a solution for printing via Wi-Fi without an internet connection, which will be addressed in the following section. In any case, it is not necessary to have a data plan in order to be able to print.

Here is the procedure to follow for printing directly via Wi-Fi from your Android phone.

  • Go to the settings on your phone and navigate to the "Printing" tab. To find it, you may need to scroll through the dropdown menu or use the search bar.
  • You may or may not have a default printing service installed. In either case, it is recommended to click on "Add a service" and download the corresponding application for the brand of printer you are using (such as HP, Lexmark, Canon, or Samsung).
  • Set the toggle switch to "On" to activate the selected printing service.
  • Now, all you need to do is go to the file you want to print (such as a PDF, image, or web page), click on "Print," and select the desired printer.

What types of files can be printed from an Android phone?

From an Android mobile phone, it is possible to print under the same conditions as from a computer. PDF, Word, Excel or PowerPoint documents, photos, etc.: all common formats are supported by the Google operating system. Therefore, it is a real alternative to printing from a PC or Mac, which allows complete independence from these devices.

Printing with your Android phone using Google Cloud Print

There is another solution that allows you to print from an Android device without necessarily connecting to the same Wi-Fi network as the printer. To do this, you need to use a Google service that can be particularly convenient: Google Cloud Print. However, in order to use this technique, it is necessary to have a compatible printer. Additionally, the printer must be connected to the internet.

To determine compatibility, it is recommended to check the list available on the Google Cloud Print website. Once your printer is compatible with Google Cloud Print, you need to follow the specific instructions for your printer brand, which can be found in the aforementioned link.

Furthermore, it is necessary to pair the printer with a Google account, which must be present on the Android phone in question. To print the desired file, simply install the Google Cloud Print application on your Android phone. Then, configure your printer from the application and print your files directly using the "Print" or "Share" function.

Printing from an Android smartphone without an internet connection: is it possible?

The solutions described above are relatively easy to set up, but they have a major drawback. To use them, it is indeed necessary to have an internet connection. For people who want to print without an internet connection, there are solutions to implement. This can be particularly useful for French residents living in internet dead zones.

How to make a USB print with an Android phone?

For those who don't have the ability to print via Wi-Fi from their Android phone, there are other solutions. One option is to use a USB cable to make the printouts with Android. However, you will need an adapter called an OTG (On-The-Go) to do this. It converts the micro-USB port of the smartphone into a standard USB port, allowing you to connect the printer directly.

Although this printing method is very simple to implement, you still need to have the OTG adapter, an Android smartphone, and a printer with "USB Plug-And-Play." This is a functionality that allows you to print your files with a simple printer connection.

Here too, it will also be necessary to use a printing service. It can be a service installed by default on the phone, as is often the case with Samsung devices, the dedicated printer application, or a third-party application like PrinterShare Print. The steps to follow are then the same as those described at the beginning of the page.

Wi-Fi Direct: a solution for printing from an Android phone without an internet router

Not all French consumers have an internet router at home. For them, there are solutions available to print from their Android phone. The first one is called Wi-Fi Direct. It is a lesser-known technology that, as the name suggests, allows you to directly connect your smartphone to the printer via Wi-Fi. Despite its name, which may make you think of internet routers, it is not necessary to have one to use this method.

To set up this solution, however, you need to have a printer that is compatible with this technology and follow a pairing procedure. To do this, you need to visit the website of your printer's brand to find the instructions. Sometimes, this process can be simplified using NFC technology, which allows for easy connection between the printer and the mobile phone.


NFC: A technology with various uses

NFC (Near Field Communication) is a technology that allows the exchange of data at short distances. It is useful for pairing an accessory with a mobile phone, as in the case of printers compatible with this standard. However, NFC is used for many other purposes, such as contactless payment or data transfer. Furthermore, it is also used in the chips present in transport cards.

Android Printing with NFC: Streamlined Process

Some printers offer a particularly convenient feature: printing via NFC. To do this, you need both a printer and a smartphone equipped with this wireless technology. There are two possible solutions. The first involves using the printer manufacturer's application, while the second involves using the smartphone manufacturer's application. In both cases, you need to activate NFC on your smartphone and Wi-Fi Direct on the printer.

Here is the process to print on Android using NFC, using the example of the Samsung Mobile Print application:

  1. Activate NFC on your mobile phone and Wi-Fi Direct on the printer.
  2. Launch the Samsung Mobile Print application on your smartphone.
  3. Choose the content to print and press Print.
  4. Position the back of your mobile phone near the "NFC" sticker on the printer and wait a few seconds for the smartphone to connect to it.

Printing via Bluetooth from an Android mobile device

Another option exists to connect a wireless printer to an Android phone, which is through Bluetooth connectivity. To do this, you obviously need a printer that has this functionality.

Next, it is necessary to enable the Bluetooth function on your smartphone and choose to connect to the specific printer. The rest of the procedure to follow is again identical to the one explained for Wi-Fi printing. Therefore, you will need to use the printer's brand application, the smartphone manufacturer's application, or finally a third-party application.

Once the operation is completed, it is advisable to disable Bluetooth, which will help save the battery of your phone. In conclusion, there are multiple ways to print from your Android phone. Some are simple to set up, while others are more complicated.

These days, the majority of French people have an internet box. For those in this situation, it is recommended to use Wi-Fi printing, which is easy to set up and quite effective. There are also other solutions available, such as using a laptop or desktop computer, an Android or iOS tablet, or an iOS phone, for instance.

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