FingerPrint App Makes Printing from iPad Unbelievably Straightforward

If you work on the iPad a lot chances are you will need to print your documents at some point. Anyone who has tried setting up AirPrint™ service to work with their existing printer will have discovered one of a few things: 1) their printer isn’t AirPrint™ compatible; 2) curse and swear at Apple for making life difficult; 3) it’s easier to give up — the path of least resistance. I soon came across an installer for Windows that enables the AirPrint service to work with any shared printer. Everything seemed OK for a while until one fine day after upgrading to iOS 5 printing immediately stopped working. All this time, I had only been printing black and white documents to my legacy HP LaserJet 1200 printer and I discovered this problem when I installed Canon Easy-PhotoPrint (Canon iEPP) app on the iPad to enable photo printing. Excitement and pride quickly turned to disappointment when the attached photo printer couldn’t be found.

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The blurb: “Canon Easy-PhotoPrint (Canon iEPP) is a free application that allows you to easily print photos and scan from your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad on a compatible PIXMA multifunction printer via a local wireless network (Wi-Fi).” except I couldn’t get it to work so I needed Plan B.

So back to Google I probed for more enlightening solutions perhaps a miracle even after an unproductive and exhausting night stubbornly trying to print to the Canon PIXMA iP 6700D. Evidently, miracles do exist and one such miracle is FingerPrint by Collobos Software that runs on Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows.

All your printers are displayed in an easy to read list in FingerPrint’s main window. You can then select which printers you want to AirPrint™ enable. Bonjour technology is used to advertise your printers, and in seconds those printers will show up in your iDevice. — Collobos Software

FingerPrint quickly identifies two shared printers over my home WiFi network and a couple of test prints confirmed its effectiveness. FingerPrint also makes it easy to move files from your iDevice to your computer, and save files to Dropbox.

[ Read my review: SnapSeed — My Favourite Photo Editing App on the iPad 2 ]

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SnapSeed is my favourite mobile photo editor. There are more than enough features to turn a good picture great and takes just a bit more to make it wow. FingerPrint now makes it possible to print without forcing you to spend on an AirPrint compatible photo printer.

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While FingerPrint makes printing to the PIXMA iP6700D possible, it doesn’t mean Canon Easy-PhotoPrint works as much as I would like it to. It simply means I am able to print from my favourite photo app, SnapSeed, with print size limited to 14.5 x 9.5cm. Even without a print control panel, I am happy with the the accurate colour rendition.

Besides unprecedented ease of printing, FingerPrint also makes it easy to move files from your iDevice to your computer. Open up documents and photos, import photos into iPhoto (Mac only), and save files to Dropbox. Find out more about at www.collobos.com. In case the booklet on the left of the sunflower print caught your eye, pictures from the Islamic Tourism Brunei Darussalam assignment are one of my 2011 highlights.