For the photographic community I think it’s fair to say that the jury is still out so far as the legitimacy of smartphone photography goes. Some say that it’s a fad, others that it is the future. Although I am no evangelist, I do think that the quality of images now achievable is pretty impressive and I can believe a future where the point and shoot is surpassed by the smartphone camera. As you can probably tell, I love taking pictures with my camera phone.
So if you are like me your phone is probably jammed with all kinds of images none of which do anything more than live on your handset or PC. I have always been a massive fan of printing my images, there is just something so satisfying about taking a picture from conception to capture and finally on to paper yet for some reason we don’t think that this applies to the pictures we take on our phone. Recently I discovered the joy of printing images directly from my phone and I can hand on heart say that it’s the best thing you can possibly do with your smartphone pictures. Just in case you aren’t sure how to get started here is a short guide:
Disclaimer – The steps below cover wireless printing from the iPhone (just because it’s the only smartphone I have). It is possible to print from Android handsets however the operating system doesn’t (I believe) do this natively so you may need to download an separate app to do this but the process should be broadly similar.
The printer – The best way to print directly from your phone is by using a wireless printer however not all printers support Apple AirPrint so don’t forget to check that your printer is compatible. The Apple website contains a list of compatible printers however its worth checking your printer manufacturers website also.
Get your media – You can print on any media which your printer can handle however my preference is to use one of the various pre cut photo papers which are readily available online or in any stationary store. I personally like to print on 6 x 4 glossy sheets as I find that this give a pleasing balance between image size and quality. You can go larger if you like but don’t forget that the maximum size you can print and maintain image quality will be dependent upon the resolution of your camera. A batch of 50 sheets retails in the region of £5 (about $8 US) so assuming you already have a printer its a pretty cheap investment.
As iOS have inbuilt support for wireless printing (via AirPrint) sending your images to your printer is actually very simple. Check out the video below to see the actual process but in summary here are the main steps:
Navigate to your Photos app.
Select a photo to print.
Tap the share icon (the one with the pointing arrow).
Tap the print icon.
Printing from your phone is a fantastic way to make more of your smartphone images and is an especially good way to share your mobile masterpieces with friends and family. Having recently discovered the joys of printing from my phone I can highly recommend giving this a try, its cheap, easy and a great way to bring your smartphone pictures to life. Enough said!