How to add Printer to iPad wireless (An easy Guide)

Add Printer to iPad with or without AirPrint.

How to add Printer to iPad

How to add Printer to iPad or iPhone

How to add printer to iPad or iPhone directly without taking help of PC is a frequently asked questions by Apple device users because portability is always a focus for smart-phones and tablets – especially when it comes to unanticipated printing needs on-the-go.  Further, taking print from iPhone or iPad is now found to be a really useful feature to have because more and more people are now using their iPhone or iPad to store important documents, gather information from web-pages and send and receive e-mails regularly. Now how to connect ipad to printer?

iPad uses a software feature called AirPrint to connect iPad to printer. Airprint compatible printers can print any documents or safari pages from your iPad or iPhone with touch of a button. Most new printers come with this software feature built in. But if you don’t have an Airprint compatible printer, or if you want to use a printer that doesn’t have AirPrint, all is not lost. There are a range of options for printing from iPad or iPhone, with or without AirPrint in your home or office.

The procedures described here on how to add printer to iPad using AirPrint or a third-party apps are not limited to iPad only but also applicable to print from iPhone 3GS or later versions or a third-generation or later iPod Touch.

What is AirPrint?  

Before I go to show how to add printer to iPad let me first explain what is ‘AirPrint’. In order to save the hassle of transferring documents from Apple devices to your computer and then printing them out, Apple has introduced a handy software feature called AirPrint to connect wireless printers. It is a feature which is built into Apple’s mac OS and iOS operating systems for printing via a Wi-Fi network either directly to AirPrint-compatible printers, or to non-compatible shared printers by way of a computer running Microsoft Windows, Linux, or mac OS. AirPrint does not require any printer specific drivers. To use an AirPrint printer with your Wi-Fi network, the printer is to be connected to the same network as your iOS device or Mac. After you add printer to iPad or iPhone wireless you can directly take prints of the emails, photos, documents and web-pages straight from the device as long as the printer is compatible with the AirPrint. The AirPrint software lets you use the same wireless network as your iOS device or Mac to access the printer. Now, let us see how to connect iPad to printer using AirPrint.

How to add printer to iPad wireless using AirPrint

Use of AirPrint technology is the most common and powerful way to connect iPad to printer wireless, as the program is integrated into the iOS devices. This software feature is incorporated in all the iOS devices such as iPad, iPhone (3GS or later) and iPod Touch (3rd generation or later), which helps to add printer to iPad or other iOS devices wireless to print over a Wi-Fi network. Once an AirPrint enabled printer is connected to the network it is very simple to print items from your Apple idevice.

  Steps to follow to add printer to iPad for printing from the iOS device :

  1. Make sure you have the latest version of iOS on your iPad. You can check the version of iOS on your iPad by going to Settings > General > Software Update. If a software update is available install it;
  2. When connecting your iPad to a wireless network make sure to know the network name and password and follow the standard Wi-Fi safety procedures;
  3. Before you add printer to iPad make sure that you have an AirPrint enabled printer. AirPrint is built into most of the popular printer models nowadays. To check if your wireless printer is supported, you can view this list of AirPrint enabled printers on Apple’s website. Apple adds new printers to this list regularly. If your printer isn’t on the list, consult the printer manufacturer’s website for more information on whether AirPrint is supported and how to update your firmware to the latest version;
  4. Ensure that your iOS device and your printer are connected to the same Wi-Fi network and that you are within range. Your iPad won’t recognize your printer if it is not connected on the same network. Each printer has a specific way to connect it to the network. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions specific to your printer in this regard and connect iPad to printer accordingly (Note: AirPrint does not support public wireless networks, such as public mobile hotspots, Bluetooth, or cellular data connections, either 3G or 4G);
  5. After turning on your printer, wait a few moments before printing from iPad or iPhone. Some printers might take a minute or two after powering up before joining your network (make sure that the wireless feature on your printer is ‘on’;
  6. Once you add Printer to iPad correctly, navigate to the app you want to print from (Mail, Pages, Photos etc.);
  7. AirPrint is not a stand-alone program. You can only use AirPrint with iOS core apps, such as Safari, Mail, Pages, and Photos, which allows you to print items like emails, photos, documents and WebPages directly from your iPad;
  8. Open the app containing the item/document you want to print. Click the share icon button located on the top bar of the app screen that looks like a ‘rectangle with an arrow coming out‘. This will open a menu options. Tap the ‘Print’ icon from the options that appear to load the ‘Printer Options’ screen. Tap ‘Select Printer’ on the Printer Options screen to see a list of available printers on the network;
  9. how to connect iPad to wireless printer
  10. When you are printing from iPad for the first time, you’ll need to hit this ‘select printer’ to choose an AirPrint-enabled printer.  Afterwards your iPad or iPhoe would scan for the local AirPrint printer. If you have more than one AirPrint compatible printer on the network, choose the one that you wish to print from;
  11. Select the numbers of copies you want to print (use the + or – buttons in the Copy field to adjust the number of copies).
  12. Tap the ‘Print’ button in the upper-right corner to print the desired item;

How to connect iPad to printer without Airprint

how to set up printer on ipad using third party apps

Using AirPrint compatible printers is certainly easy for printing from iPad wireless. However, AirPrint offers no control over things like paper size or print quality. For such reasons and more, you may want a different sort of printing solution. If your network printer is not AirPrint-compatible, you need not get upset. There are many third-party apps that in effect can make the printer look like AirPrint-compatible to your iOS. So, if you use third-party apps to connect iPad to printer, instead of your Apple device talking directly with the printer, it goes through the client software on your computer first. ‘PrintCentral’ and ‘PrintBureau’ are two such apps that I personally prefer. They all work in a similar manner.

‘PrintCentral’ is an excellent printing and file sharing app for the iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch. It has a file browser and e-mail reader that allows you to access anything on your iOS device. This third-party app will allow you to print direct to a network printer across your Wi-Fi network. You can also install a helper application on your Mac or PC, called ‘WePrint’, which is a free client software that lets ‘PrintCentral’ work with any other printers connected to your Mac/PC via Bluetooth, USB or WiFi.

How to connect iPad to Printer  using PrintCentral

For printing from iPad, regardless of how you setup printer on iPad, the printer and your iPad will need to be on the same network. Follow the steps below to add printer to iPad and print using PrintCentral:

  1. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions specific to your printer to connect it to the same network as your iOS device;
  2. Download and install ‘PrintCentral’ from app store to your iPad;
  3. Download the free ‘WePrint‘ application to your computer (both Mac and Windows  Versions are available);
  4. Plug-in the connector cable into your iPad and USB port of your PC;
  5. Open ‘WePrint’ and you can see the address of your server;
  6. Open ‘PrintCentral’ on iPad;
  7. Tap on the Files or Documents button;
  8. Tap the “Getting Started – Test Print file.txt” to display its contents;
  9. Tap the Print icon in the top-right corner of the screen, and the Print dialog screen will appear;
  10. Tap the ‘Choose’ button and enter the server address you found in ‘WePrint’, into the dialog that appears. PrintCentral connects and displays all of your printers;
  11. Tap the printer you want to use. If this is your first print you will see a test section that will enable you to test and find the correct protocol for your printer. Tap the Print button in the Print dialog to print the test document. When you see the results tap on Yes or No;
  12. When you find it working alright, go back to the Print screen and use the ‘Menu’ button to open a document in PrintCentral and start printing the desired item by tapping on the “Print” button;

Finally, a more easy way to add printer to iPad has been made possible by using dedicated apps from printer makers such as Print Portal, HP Envy and Epson iPrint. These apps works much the same way as AirPrint i.e. the apps communicate directly with the printer and you can print from iPhone or iPad with ease.

You may also like: Major difference between iPad and Tablet


Going through the procedure described above on ‘how to connect iPad to printer’ wireless without taking help of PC, one thing must be clear now that setting up printer on iPad using AirPrint or a third party apps, is not at all a big thing. Once you add Printer to iPad properly following the steps mentioned above, printing from iPad or iPhone can be done with ease without even touching your computer.

Lastly, as mentioned earlier, the steps described here on how to add Printer to iPad are not limited to just iPad only.  AirPrint printer is versatile and capable of printing from any Apple’s iOS devices that is on the network such as iPad, iPhone (3GS or later) and iPod Touch (3rd generation or later), provided the steps to connect iPad to printer are properly followed.

The procedure to setup printer on iPad described here is also applicable to add Printer to iPhone or iPod Touch to print from the devices.

5 Responses to “How to add Printer to iPad wireless (An easy Guide)”

  1. James

    Dec 28. 2015

    Hey Great info! Thanks for sharing it. Click here to get the best support for hp printer.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Lyn

    Mar 19. 2016

    Hi people,I have checked and my printer to s not on list, should I be updating my printer it is a Brother MPC-J415W any advice welcome thanks Lyn

    Reply to this comment
  3. Jimmy

    Aug 29. 2016

    Great info! Worked great on my HP Envy 4520.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Haridas Mandal

    Nov 29. 2016

    How to connect physically my ipad air 2 to my hp deskjet ink advantage k 209 printer?

    Reply to this comment
    • radharenu ganguly

      Dec 04. 2016

      Hi Mondol,
      If the printer is connected to the same wireless network, it should show up as an option from any app capable of printing when you select the print function. If it isn’t showing up when you attempt to print, you may need to do the following:
      1. Turn off the printer
      2. Restart the router.
      3. When the router is back and fully running, turn the printer back on and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for connecting wireless. (the printer connection must be wireless)

      Reply to this comment

Leave a Reply