How to do it:
– a PC with Windows XP, Vista or 7
– latest version of Google Chrome (in US English) running on the PC
In Chrome, click on the “Tools” wrench icon at the top right and select options from the drop down menu; then select the tab called “Under the Hood” and enable Google Cloud Print using the button at the bottom. You’ll have to sign into your Google account, and then you should see a message saying that you’ve successfully enabled Cloud Print.
Now, if you open up your Gmail account in your phone, you should be able to print an email or attachment (.pdf or .doc), or a Google Docs file. Basically, you’re sending what’s already in the Google “cloud” to the printer that you’ve set up.
One important requirement: the Windows computer that you set the printer up on has to remain on.
Support for Mac and Linux systems is reported to be coming soon.
Is it worth it?
Remember the service is still in beta, which means there are bugs to be worked out – for example, it has problems with Gmail addresses that contain capital letters. It’s still fairly limited. But it’s worth a look, because it’s the start of something that’s going to expand and improve. After all, paper copies aren’t going anywhere for a while yet!
Have you tried Google Cloud Print? Did it work? Will you use it? Leave a comment to share your thoughts and experiences…