By: Glenn Moore
There are currently many ventures founded today enabling cloud printing in public spaces. The latest trend has been the release of an Android application which enables true cloud printing uploads to its print network. GlobalPrint for one, has units installed in public locations such as convention centers, hotels, resorts and airport lounges. The company’s install base of enabled printers, nodes and kiosks can be used by consumers to walk up, login, print and go.
According to a release, users can “print to the cloud” using a number of methods, including the Android SmartPhone.
A consumer can download the free up-loader from the company’s website, then use it from within any Windows based application by simply choosing File… Print. Consumers can also print from thumb drives or by sending an email to the user’s unique email address. Now, users can also use their Android smart phone to select any document on the phone’s storage, email folders, SMS text messages or photo gallery. The application is available now on the Android Market by searching for “PrintPOD.”
What is truly different about all of these offerings is that they are all non-destination specific. Users print to the cloud, not to a specific print device. Users can find enabled locations using Google Maps (either on a web browser or with the Android application), approach a device, login, and choose their document, print and go. Unlike other products which require the advanced selection of a specific printer, entering “release codes” or finding an open Wi-Fi or Bluetooth printer, this new approach is the ultimate in ease of use.
The simplicity of the implementation relieves the “owner” of the printer from having to interact with the user, but it encourages “stickiness” — the user can stay out in the field or at any other public location and use more services since printing is available back their home “owner” site. For example, an architect, engineer or any other professional working in the field will now not have to stop their critical activity as output is now available. Owners of print devices also enjoy the timeliness of information communication.
For the coffee shop, restaurant, hotel or any other hospitality organization, they can now charge customers that use their printer for prints made in their facilities, underwriting the total cost of ownership of a device they most likely already own to print emails, invoices, customer orders and other general business documents. The site owner can now move the printer from the back office to the public space, encouraging consumer use and capturing more consumer transactions. And as we all know, with economies of scale, this will enable the device owners to get a more effective, efficient device for their own usage.