File Under: Browsers

Google Cloud Print, Now With PDF Power

Printing to Android. Image: Google

Google has updated its Cloud Print service with a couple of new features aimed at making it easier to move documents from your phone or tablet to a dead tree near you.

Cloud Print, which was first introduced in 2010, is designed to make it easy to print files from Android devices (and Chromebooks). The latest version adds support for printing to a local FedEx office as well as integration with some new Canon printers that will natively support Cloud Print.

Near the bottom of Google’s announcement is another feature that’s far more useful: “printing” to your Android device. Provided you’ve installed the latest Chrome for Android Beta on your phone and are signed in to your Google account, your Android device will now appear as a destination printer in the Cloud Print dialog. Select your device and Cloud Print will send a PDF to your phone, which will then automatically open it in Chrome for Android.

While you can accomplish something similar using services like Dropbox to sync PDFs to your phone (or iTunes if you’re an iOS user), Cloud Print’s print to Android is one of the easiest, fastest ways I’ve seen to get just about any file or webpage to a phone.

The only catch is that, as with the Chrome for Android beta, you’ll need to have Android 4 or better installed on your phone or tablet.