Android devices, too, enjoy either a wireless app for direct printing from most printer vendors, or the benefits of Google Cloud Print. Google Cloud Print is notable for being brand-independent and for working with older printers as well as newer ones.
New Windows 8 devices don't have much to work with yet, other than platform-independent solutions like Google Cloud Print and HP ePrint. Surface tablets, like devices using Apple AirPrint, will print to any printer on the same wireless network.
To use Google Cloud Print, an older printer needs to be connected to a Windows, Mac, or Linux PC that's turned on and connected to the Internet. If you see the term "Google Cloud Print Ready" in your printer's specs, that means it can connect directly to the Internet, skipping the computer intermediary. The sending device has to run Android or iOS and use the Chrome browser, and you have to have a Gmail account. A Print option will appear for printing Gmail attachments or files uploaded to Google Drive. You can also share your printer with friends or colleagues who have the same basic setup, either as individuals or as part of a Google Group. Not bad for an app that's still officially in beta.
Find printers wherever you go
HP's ePrint may be brand-specific, but it's still the most mature mobile printing solution. It comes in enterprise as well as consumer flavors, and HP's ePrint Public Print Locations let you print to machines at UPS Store and FedEx Office locations, as well as many hotels, airport lounges, public libraries, and other organizations. HP offers an ePrint app for iOS, Android, and BlackBerry devices that lets you locate accessible ePrint Public Print Location printers and send print jobs on the fly.
Widely deployed services like these show how you can remove some of the uncertainty from needing to print when you're on the go, whether passing through a city or an airport. More office stores, airports, hotels, and even public libraries are adding printers that can be detected by mobile users. FedEx Office stores also accept Google Cloud Print jobs, if you choose "Print to FedEx Office" in the Cloud Print dialog box.
Your device app may be able to detect compatible printers in the area, or you may get access information from the airport-lounge manager or librarian. In most cases, after sending the job, you get back an access code to release the printout when you get to the printer. In most cases, you also pay a fee for the print.