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Mark Davis

Cloud Printing and the Changing Workspace

How cloud printing is bridging the gap between the paper and digital world

Aug 25, 2023 9:57:20 AM


Cloud printing has transformed the professional print space, giving extra flexibility and choice to users and IT professionals where before the element of choice was not possible. Cloud printing is not just about being able to print from any device, it encompasses a whole range of technologies that automate the way we manage printing. Although the technology is over ten years old, it proved itself most useful during the pandemic. Corporate workers who would usually use office hardware for their printing needs were able to harness the power of a device in their home office for work needs. Since 2020, many organizations have seen their print infrastructure migrate to the cloud, and service providers have jumped at the opportunity to provide Managed Print Services (MPS) to these organizations, making it easier for organizations regardless of their size to get the most out of their print infrastructure.



What Is Cloud printing?

Cloud printing allows users to print from any web-connected device by routing print jobs between a PC, smartphone, or tablet, and sending them to an internet-connected printer. However, this simple definition can be expanded to include the three kinds of cloud printing solutions available. The first is consumer-based, connecting mobile devices and PCs to cloud-enabled home printers that users own or have access to. The second is office cloud printing, allowing employees to print from anywhere to any corporate or home printer without the need for servers or print drivers. The third is commercial cloud, enabling content owners to print their digital publications by leveraging production facilities through cloud computing technology. Although targeted at different market groups, each of the three types of cloud printing allow greater freedom in printing both for end-users and IT professionals managing and maintaining the infrastructure.


Benefits for End-users

There are many benefits associated with office cloud printing. Among them is the ability to print from anywhere, whether it be a physical location or print device. The flexibility for users, whether they’re using a Bring Your Own Device (BOYD) in the office, or a mobile device at home, enables them to still enjoy the same level of functionality as users who print in a conventional way. Cloud printing also reduces the hassle of installing and maintaining drivers on a specific device, improving user experience, and increasing the efficiency of the print devices available at any given time.


Benefits for IT Administrators  

IT administrators also benefit from office cloud printing. It minimizes the need to maintain the software and drivers on print devices in-person. Rather, IT administrators can update devices remotely, check status updates remotely, and carry out routine software maintenance on each device simultaneously rather than individually. Cloud printing also helps to reduce costs within the IT department budget, specifically costs around software updates for individual machines. Budget that would usually be allocated for routine maintenance carried out at the machine in-person can be reallocated to other areas of the department thanks to the automation cloud printing provides.


Unlocking Cloud Printing with Adobe

Cloud printing finds its champion in PDF—not just as a preferred document format but also as the quintessential Page Description Language (PDL). Serving as the foundation of modern printing workflows, PDF's influence extends to industry standards such as AirPrint, Mopria, and Windows IPP. This pervasive adoption fuels a surge in PDF-printing and sets the stage for the evolution of decentralized office and enterprise printing. At the heart of modern office printers lies the Raster Image Processor (RIP), the technology that converts graphics into the precise dots of ink or toner that shape the final print output. Enter Adobe's Embedded Print Engine, the industry's leading print RIP with native PDF rendering capabilities. This technology powers millions of printers worldwide across diverse device types and printing scenarios, including the intricate web of cloud printing workflows. Adobe remains steadfast in its commitment to cloud printing, empowering Printer Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) with the cutting-edge print RIP technology. Adobe Embedded Print Engine guarantees accurate and consistent print output across a wide array of print devices and print paths.


Keypoint Intelligence Opinion

Cloud printing is not a new phenomenon, but it has embedded itself in our technological sphere because of a need for greater printing flexibility, easier maintenance, and greater financial returns. Over the last few years, cloud printing solutions have become more diverse, more refined, and more reliable, aiding users’ printing needs by still maintaining WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) and providing a far better printing solution for IT administrators and businesses generally. Adobe’s Embedded Print Engine enables cloud printing users to experience the same quality that they would from conventional print workflows, with the guarantees of consistency regardless of device or document type. Cloud printing aids all those who utilize it, and service providers are constantly developing their software to ensure that user experience continues to evolve to the highest level. More verticals will begin to adopt cloud printing solutions as they look to reduce costly maintenance bills and divert IT administrator’s time to other projects, meaning that we will continue to see an increase in cloud printing solutions being deployed in the personal space and workspace.  


This blog was written with additional input from Adobe.


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