Print To Go for the BlackBerry PlayBook allows you to print files and documents to your PlayBook from your desktop computer!

By Kevin Michaluk on 11 Jan 2012 10:35 am EST

After giving us great previews of PlayBook OS 2.0, we caught up with RIM's Jeff Gadway again at the BlackBerry booth at CES2012 who gave us a preview of another awesome application coming to the BlackBerry PlayBook with PlayBook OS 2.

Print To Go is a really handy utility that I think a ton of BlackBerry PlayBook owners will want to take advantage of. Step 1 is to install onto your computer the drivers for Print To Go, which will be available from Once installed, you can then Print files to your PlayBook. Let's say you're going on a trip to CES2013. From your computer, when looking at emails like your travel itinerary or something like a map of the CES show floor, you can then go to print them as you would to a regular printer, but instead choose the Print To Go option. Once you connect your PlayBook to Print To Go by logging in with your BlackBerry ID, then any Print To Go documents will automagically appear within the Print To Go app on the BlackBerry PlayBook.

The Print To Go app itself is really a nice application, getting some of those TAT/Cascades effects that are coming to the PlayBook OS 2 and BlackBerry 10 platform. You can arrange and sort your documents into piles, view the files easily as pdfs, and if you ever want to delete a file the paper shredder will come to town and cut your file to shreds.

Check out the video above to get a closer look at Print To Go for the BlackBerry PlayBook and see it in action!

Reader comments

Print To Go for the BlackBerry PlayBook allows you to print files and documents to your PlayBook from your desktop computer!


Print To Go is nice, but honestly no different than printing a file to PDF and then transferring it to the Playbook. Ho Hum - with DropBox I can get files simplier and way. Adobe Air etc...

What is really needed is the ability to print from the Playbook.

Dont get me wrong i like how it looks and wísh Documents to go had those effects, but it is not one of those things that right away make me say "man, i can do so much with this".

I am loving all the options that theyre continuing to provide to us!

May not be useful for you but I can tell you that people using their PlayBook for work are going to love this. I know I will!

OH HELLS YA. The more they update OS 2.0 the less paper I have to carry around every day. KEEP IT UP! I love this.

Not too impressed either. Simple, everyday things like sending a map or a quick document I send from my computer to me in an email and open up on my BB phone. It's quick and easy and my phone is always with me. I guess this could be useful if you are traveling without your laptop and need to take a bunch of files... Sending files or pictures from my plabook to a printer would be something useful.

I get that. My e-mail has become something of a cloud-based filing system, but I think this is a great way of "caching locally" for stuff that's really important.

I love this idea and can see myself using this at work. I don't have a BB phone and I cannot connect wirelessly from my desktop to the PlayBook because they are on different networks.

Would this be more of a Printer producer issue than a Playbook? Don't they have to produce the avenue in order to Print from a tablet? If so, then maybe companies will start noticing that companies like Apple and RIM are not slowing down in the tablet industry and we will start becoming picky as to which printer to buy based on if it works with the tablet we own.

That's what I thought this was when I first heard about it... my heart sunk a little, then I realized how useful this could be as I no longer have to carry around papers, rather just my PlayBook.

Excellent idea from RIM.

I print FROM my PlayBook all the time using the e-print function of my HP wireless printer. Not as convenient as AirPrint but it works. Search the PlayBook forum for instructions.

Don't you need an HP Printern in order to use the HP ePrint app? I would even pay to just be able to print from my PlayBook via wifi to to the network or home printer!

I guess Cut the Rope won't be free. $4.99 seems to be the standard price for these popular apps/games. Hoping they might have a "lite" version of the game as they did with other platforms.

Btw... Love Print to Go... sick UI!

Now this makes a whole lot of sense, i print to pdf a whole lot from my mac and then copy to my pb, web pages, articles or guides to read later, this just makes things much simpler. excellent!

humm, did u guys saw that Adobe Reader had a new opening screen.. i wonder if we will also have a new version of Adobe Reader, maybe with bookmarks ;-) that would be nice.

Super convenient app! I like to print stuff off just before i run off to meetings, so this will make it a whole lot easier.

I usual just transfer most files through wi-fi or use PrimoPDF or native software add-ons to convert to PDF, but this seems a little more streamline than my methods.

Can't wait for OS2.

You can set most wireless printers to use e-print and then email the file to the printer. This is how I print from my PlayBook. AirPrint would be nice, though.

The whole time I was expecting this to print to a printer (like AirPrint).

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed. Its a cool feature, and will be useful but getting it to a physical copy would be even better. RIM shoulda went all out on this one with both features on board, RIM needs these features at the moment.

This will certainly get some use, but to really help replace my laptop, I'd need to be able to get a hard copy of some documents. They mention printing boarding passes to the Playbook. Does the bar code scan properly on a Playbook? I've used CardStar and other key card apps on my BB and they have difficulty scanning with some scanners. Having the ability to print my boarding pass would make me feel a lot more comfortable.

While more features are better than less features - and maybe I am missing something - but how is this different than connecting your PB to a PC and moving files?

1. convenience - you don't need your cable, it's sent OTA directly to you PB via your BBID.
2. streamlined - the docs you send over are in the print to go app already - you don't have to "find them" or decide where to copy them.
3. aimed more for professionals who might be on the way out the door to a meeting and want access to docs on their PB, just as his real-world example explained.

Cool feature for sure, but casual users will most likely not use or need it.

This allows you to print from any application that supports printing on your PC and view it on your PB in one streamlined step. For example, copying your AutoCAD files to your PB wont neccesarily allow you to view them on the PB. Have you tried copying a web page to the PB? Essentially you need to print it to a soft format (like PDF) anyway. Plus, there's the bonus of it automagically appearing on your PB over-wifi and into a tool that allows you to organize your prints easier than managing folders via the file manager.

I think this is a fantastic idea, and the ability to sort is great, with some TAT magic! I think RIM was wise in having OS 2 features coming out all together. I think RIM has finally gotten some momentum from their slow start and will be a force to reckon with again!

It's nice to see them using their cloud infrastructure for something new. I really think if the NewBay acquisition is integrated correctly with the TAT/Cascades UI, then you will see Blackberry make a legit third option in 2012.

Kevin did you get any word on printing a hard copy directly from the PB to a printer? I like this function but chances are I will be spending less time on my pc and more on the Playbook. One reason to jump on the pc is going to be the lack of ability to print hard copies. Let us know.

I dont get how the Playbook actually receives the file. So I'm at work, I have a file on my cpt and I use Print to Go. Do I then have to turn on my Playbook and log onto a site in order to get the file? What if there was no wifi connection for my Playbook - which does happen at work - can this be used via tethering to my phone? Sorry if it's a dumb question but can anyone explain in more detail how the Playbook would acutally receive the file?

i think you connect your pb to your comp via usb. then comp recognizes as one of the printers and you can print as usual.

He just went into the Print-To-Go app and used BBID, but it does appear you will need wifi.

So, its Print-To-Go, therefore while wifi is available; print, download and view while on the go.

On your computer at work, you'll have to install a driver that permits your computer to have printer called Playbook Print to Go. Once you want to "print" a document, simply select this new printer from the drop down list. Enter your BBID credentials (which will be tied to your PlayBook) and voila the files are sent via internet.

Now, if you don't have available wifi, I believe the Playbook will be able to get those files via a bridged Blackberry or a tethered smart phone. Maybe there's also the ability to connect the USB to your computer. Would be nice if RIM added a piece of code allowing printers to recognize a usb connected playbook as a "usb" key with the Print to Go files available as well as pictures and documents...

I hope this works via tethered to a BB phone/Bridge. In my workplace, wifi is often very spotty so relying on it is not feasable. But if tether or bridge can be used, then the options for having this work reliably are increased.

Print to your PlayBook, so the PlayBook is now a printer w/o a printer. I don't get it. If I want directions don't I just browse on my PlayBook. If I want my boarding pass can't I access it on the PB?

You need wifi/bridge access at the time you want to do those things. It's a bit riskier to do it that way. Plus, you're assuming the PB will support every single kind of viewable format. For example, can you open and view an AutoCAD .dwg drawing on the PB? Now you can at least have a soft "hard copy", if you print to it.

this title is so misleading, isnt this the same as using box or dropbox heck even evernote? we need the ability to print off the playbook from anywhere

agree....maybe they are holding that feature for the ext PB.
any idea when is the 2nd gen PB or PB2 coming out???

Nice feature but the platform still needs professional .PDF support. Please Repligo (or anyone!) Please release a proper .pdf support package. I'm looking at you Adobe! Are you not a RIM partner or something? For a business tablet it is pretty much unconscionable that there is not a better native alternative. Anyone know if Adobe or Repligo is at the show?

Totally agree. We must have a proper PDF reader for Playbook. I hope Adobe is listening: search, bookmark, annotate!

This is great! :P I'll be happy with all that. And if I want to print something from the PlayBook I'd do the same I've been doing all the time... sending the document as an attachment via email to my printer and let the printer do the work. :)

This is a great feature. I will likely use it every day, because one of my main PB uses is to read docs in the subway.

There are two next steps I'd like to see with this:

1) This should be a cloud app. Print to Go should mean "printing" to a cloud application that syncs up with your PB and BB, sort of like how BBM Music does, and maintaining the doc control (deleted, already read, etc.) synced across the cloud. It would be that much more useful.

2) This needs to be able to call other apps. Ultimately, the cloud app and dashboard should be divorced from the actual reader app. For instance, if I want to include two reports, a book, a website, and a video in my "media queue", it should be able to know about those, upload them to my private cloud drive, and launch them for me in PDF, ePub Reader, the browser of my choice, and Video Player, respectively.

Those are big next steps, but how awesome would that make the PB and the whole BB ecosystem as media consumption devices?

Regarding point (2) above: That's not printing, that's copying the original files around (which is a cool feature); but it's not what "printing" does. The main power of PrintToGo is that it allows you to use any application on your PC that supports printing and makes the result viewable on the PB; even for formats that are not normally natively viewable on PB (e.g. AutoCAD files). I still like the idea of a native, cloud-based "DropBox-like" feature though.

Most of you are thinking too small, this is great for the small guy but the place it will really benefit is for those people who have applications they can't access from the web say for example an Oracle financials application, or a customer database system, or a sales system. The employee can sit down at there computer at work go into the enterprise application, print the reports they want for the customers they are going to see today and use them at the customers location. They can even email them to the parties from the Playbook while they are sitting there talking about it.

I think this will be a huge win in corporate america.

I wonder if that Acrobat reader is new and updated or whether it's just the splash screen that's new. Would really be nice to see a full-featured pdf reader in OS 2.

Lameness to the Max...........
How is that even printing????

Printing on the playbook...seriously are you kidding.

I like this feature & can definitely see me using it because there are times that I use my Playbook for trainings at work & this would definitely make things easier but I'm with others, when (if ever) are we going to be able to print from our PB to a printer??? Other than that I'm loving what 2.0 seems to be bringing to the table & I'm still running a 5.0 Berry, good Lord when I finally am able to upgrade to a newer phone/OS I'll really be on cloud 9 but with just what I'm seeing so far I can't wait for February (I'm just hoping it really happens so my hopes aren't THAT high just yet).

Can already do this on OS1.x. Print to PDF on your PC/Mac then email to yourself it or put in DropBox or and access it from the PlayBook.

Dont wanna be a debbie downer but figured it was the ability to print from the playbook to a wireless printer or such. This is a basic... convert documents to pdf "printer ;)" Verrrrrry misleading, i was hoping for printing capabilities!

For my company, this is the Killer App we've been waiting for. We've been stuck deciding to go with either iPads or PlayBooks as secure document-viewers... we are not allowed to hook up the tablet via USB to a PC, or connect to the email server, or use file-sharing sites like Dropbox, so the question was, how to get documents onto the tablet? This app is pretty much the decision maker.

Another new feature by RIM that is extremely usable. Can't wait for the next OS, just wish I had bought the 32g Playbook now instead of the 16g. Drat! I use mine almost every day. Games, internet browsing, movies. Love my BBPB.

A little OT but any update to the pdf reader? I noticed a file was being opened with it but nothing was really shown.

but how is this different from an evernote application,can the same thing be done with evernote save the file to evernote desktop and open the note on evernote for playbook.

Installation hung on my Win 7(64) laptop. At the installation screen with the "This could take several minutes", the timer bar went to the far right but installation didn't complete. Even after waiting 4 hours. When I try to reinstall, I see a screen asking if I want to repair or uninstall. I choose repair and get a message saying "Error 1500. Another installationn is in progress. You must complete that installation before continuing this one."

At first I thought Print to Go would not mean much added functionality for me. Well I guess I was wrong, for school I needed some docs about pharmacotherapy, stuff which we are allowed to store digitally, so I send myself some docs and it is quite easy to do so! Safes me the 'trouble' of printing them and then carrying all those different papers with me. I just took my playbook hah!

Only problem I am experiencing is that my stupid Windows wi-fi connection sucks most of the time.. but that is not RIM's fault.

Has anyone had trouble with Print-to-go on a WEP key secured network?
I have to turn the security off on my router in order for print-to-go to work