When it comes down to it you’ll find two types of Bluetooth printer, there are the ones which are simply ‘Bluetooth ready’ and there are those which have it internally installed. If the mobile printer you want is Bluetooth ready it means it can have a Bluetooth adapter purchased and then plugged into the printer for wireless printing.
It comes in two forms, either as a Compact Flash card or as a usb 2.0 dongle and you need to check your printer’s specifications to pick which one you would like. Now most wireless printers are branded as being ‘wireless’ when in fact the majority fall under the category of being ready for Bluetooth which means that buying and installing of adapters – it doesn’t mean they’re good to go right away as it seems in some cases.
There are a few things which you need to be really careful about, the first thing is the cost – they can easily cost from around 10-70 dollars and it depends on the device because the Bluetooth adapters are printer specific (or sometimes range specific). Next you need to see if it comes with your printer, and again in the majority – the vast majority – of cases it won’t do, so you need to factor that in to how much you can spend. It’s also possible on some of the latest Canon mobile printers to actually be able to mount the adapter within the price which is obviously very useful because it stops an errant elbow from knocking the adapter out.
The next category of Bluetooth portable printer are those which come with it pre-installed within the device and these are the most rare to find. You don’t often see them if I’m being honest and you usually will find there are several different versions of the same basic model. Some will comes with the battery, some with Bluetooth and some will with both – that doesn’t mean that none of them come included but these tend to be limited to thermal mobile printers.
In my opinion if you want a wireless portable printer then you really should just get it with the Bluetooth installed inside. The point of going wireless is to be wire-free, and if you have to both carry around an annoying dongle, and plug it in – well that involves both wires and extra room and worst of all – extra hassle.
All of these things can easily be avoided and instead of buying it later it’s far better to just go ahead and buy it to begin with. If you’re looking for a cheap one you can go on Ebay or Amazon to take a look around, you’ll be far more likely to find one if the printer itself is older and you should be able to get a really good deal if it’s around 2-3 years old.
Seeing as they’re printer specific people have no use for them after their old mobile printer dies and they’re generally willing to put it up for sale, get rid of it and make a few bucks in the process. Just makes sure you check the seller out beforehand in case you’re dealing with someone of questionable moral fiber.
Bluetooth printing is almost certainly going to be the future and it follows in with current trends of electronic devices becoming wireless as they become more advanced. You’ll find that it’s even possible to have Bluetooth portable printers for cars, combining the travel printing with a vehicle equals endless opportunities.