Geek Pro: Print from your BlackBerry over wifi

By Joseph Holder on 14 May 2011 12:29 pm EDT
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As you may have noticed from some of my earlier Bluetooth device reviews, I hate wires. So I jump at any opportunity to cut the cable and do something new over the airwaves. Printing wirelessly has to be one of the coolest things I can do with my BlackBerry.

After starting Fixmo Tools, I navigate to the Remote Print, browse for my file to be printed and send it to my computer. Not being content with that, the actual printer isn't even connected to that computer. So my laptop wirelessly connects to the desktop and from there to the printer. All of that accomplished by Fixmo Tools. Well, almost all of it.

Getting Ready 

Browse for files on Fixmo Tools 

Keep in mind, my BlackBerry and the two computers are all connected to the same Wifi/Wired network. All of the communications pass through the same router. To get started, Fixmo tools needs a small file to run on your computer. It's this file that lets your BlackBerry print to the computer. The first time you start the Remote Print, you'll get some instructions on how to install the program.

Instead of installing it on a desktop computer, the program is installed on my notebook computer. This computer goes everywhere with me. Being the good techno geek that I am (and being frequently called upon for tech support services) I just make sure to set up some extra printers for sharing at the homes of my friends and family. That way, no matter whose house I'm at, I can always print from my laptop. From Fixmo Tools, I can print to any printer set up on the computer. I just choose the printer closest to me, and Fixmo takes care of it.

Printing  

Using your printer 

Once the program is installed, return to your BlackBerry and to Remote Print. Click Printers and then Auto Scan; within moments, your BlackBerry will find your computer. Now you can print. You'll just need to browse for something to print.

In all fairness, you're technically not printing from your BlackBerry. For all the effect it has, yes, you are printing from your BlackBerry; but that not entirely accurate. With Fixmo Tools, you're actually sending the file to your computer where the Remote Print app installed there executes a print command on the file. Ever right-click a file and choose Print? The OS opens the appropriate program and prints the file from there. Same thing with the Remote Print. Why is this important? If you can't open the document on your computer, you won't be able to print it from your BlackBerry.

Still, being able to print a myriad of files from your BlackBerry is a cool ability that ranks high on the ol' Geek Pro scale. Though you may not have a need of it now, there will come a time. And Geek Pros are all about being ready to do the impossible in the easiest possible way.

More information / download Fixmo Tools at the CrackBerry AppStore
More information / download Fixmo Tools at BlackBerry App World 

Reader comments

Geek Pro: Print from your BlackBerry over wifi

10 Comments

If you're talking about what I think you are, that's something I see in other apps, too. It's most annoying in News Feeds when i have to back out of the feed and the popup menu. I think it's time for me to do a full wipe and install.

Seems a lot more complicated than just e-mailing a file to yoour computer and then printing it. When a BB can print directly to a wireless printer, that will be cool.

Complicated? Initial setup took less than 2 minutes from downloading app and identifying server. Printing is simple. Works great.

What was happening on Joseph's computer when he clicked print. It looked like his computer opened Word then closed it? Does this app give a command for the computer to open a file, print it then close the document? Or was that whole thing just a coincidence?

+1... But the funny thing is that he said he wasn't printing through that computer, he used his laptop in another room.

I am STILL looking for a reliable printing app. Fixmo destroys my battery. Remote Print is weak. Cortado doesn't support my printer (HP Officejet 4215xi). I'm not subscribing to BreezyPrint. I guess I have to go without.