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Robert Stoeber Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I have several iPads (1 and 2) but they are all Wi-Fi only models so I'm hoping someone can answer the question for me.

 

On a 3G iPad2 can you browse the web with Safari, using the 3G connection, and print a web page on an HP AirPrint-ready printer connected in ad hoc mode?

 

The HP printers work great with my Wi-Fi iPads. I have been testing the OfficeJet 8500A. Right out of the box I turned it on and it automatically appeared as a new ad hoc network in my iPad Wi-Fi settings.  I selected that network and was able to print.  Using the HP iPrint Photo app I can also scan directly to the iPad.  Of course, when connected to this ad hoc network I can't access the Internet.

 

I'm hoping the 3G Internet access and Wi-Fi AirPrint can be used at the same time, but I have no way to test it, and I've been unable to find any information online.


iPad 2, iOS 4.3.2
  • Cole Bergmann Level 1 Level 1 (90 points)

    You can only be connected to one at a time.  If you connect to 3g to view the article, then switch on wi-fi in the settings, you should be just fine.  Using Wi-Fi and 3G at the same time I believe is not possible (without jailbreaking)

  • Mark TL Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)

    No you can't have both a wifi and a 3G connection at the same time, it's one or the other , what your asking would require you iPad to be able to handle two ip addresses from a wifi and 3G connection at the same time. I think you should reconfigure you printer to work on you wifi network.

  • Robert Stoeber Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks Mark.  I was afraid that would be the answer.  Maybe someone can suggest a way around this.

     

    The problem is that the iPad's 3G is the only access to the Internet.  Our plan is to mount printers in the back of a truck and use the printer's ad hoc network to print.  The workers already have iPads for updating their schedules, checking inventory, filling out work orders and more.  That's all great, but requires Internet access, hence the 3G.  By adding a simple $100 printer to their truck they would be able to print updated work orders to leave a copy with the customer.

     

    The scanner can also be used with HP's iPrint Photo app (I was testing that over the weekend and it seems to work very well) to capture receipts for expenses and other documents that are created at the job site.  iPrint Photo gets a nice, legible copy of these documents onto the iPad so they can be sent to the office.

     

    A somewhat clumsy workaround is to use the Terra web browser, which allows saving a local copy of a web page.  We could save the page, then disconnect from the 3G network, and connect to the ac hoc printer network to print the saved page.  This is a pretty easy and fast process on the Wi-Fi iPad, but I have no idea whether it's practical when using 3G.

     

    Any other ideas appreciated.

  • Mark TL Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)

    Hi Robert, there has got to be a better way, but I hvnt worked with the iPad in that kind of situation to know,  I would think reaching out to apple,s business specialists is the best option.

     

    GL

  • Robert Stoeber Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    We're so close.  The HP printers with AirPrint work better than I expected.  Took it out of the box, put ink and paper in, turned it on, changed the iPad's Wi-Fi to the printer's ad hoc network, and print.  It just worked.  Now if we can figure out how to print from Safari while using 3G we can really make a nice mobile platform.

  • Mike Nowak Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)

    Did you have any luck making this work?

  • Meg St._Clair Level 8 Level 8 (42,365 points)

    As explained above, it's not currently possible.

  • Robert Stoeber Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    No, I gave up.  Apparently it can't be done.  But it would be really cool if someone could make it happen.  Printing is still required in many situations and a mobile, iPad-based solution is so tantalizingly close.

  • SrLANGuy Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    I think I have a solution. It's a portable device called a Mi-Fi which acts like a Wi-Fi router, but it has 3G built-in (instead of connecting to a DSL or cable modem). This would allow you to use Wi-Fi Only iPads since the Mi-Fi device handles the 3G Internet connection. Here's a link to info on "Mi-Fi" at Wikipedia:

     

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MiFi

     

    So I'm assuming you would just connect your Wi-Fi iPad and HP printer to the Mi-Fi device, they'll both have access to the Internet, and AirPrint should just work.

  • Khurt Williams Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Not possible with any device — iPad or computer — unless that device has two network cards.  The same network card can not have two IP address just like a house can't have two street addresses.  Sure, Apple could put two network interfaces in the same device but VERY few users have a need that.  Same reason your computer only comes with one network card.  Very limited use case.  You are attempting to use a consumer product in a business environment.  Frustration will follow.

  • Mike Nowak Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)

    Actually it worked just fine. It used wifi to print and 3G to get to the Internet.

  • Chris CA Level 9 Level 9 (77,025 points)

    Khurt Williams wrote:

     

    Not possible with any device — iPad or computer — unless that device has two network cards.  The same network card can not have two IP address


    And it doesn't.

    The 3G port has one IP address and the wifi port has a different IP address.

     

    Sure, Apple could put two network interfaces in the same device but VERY few users have a need that

    The 3G iPad does have two network interfaces. One for 3G and one for wifi.

    Same reason your computer only comes with one network card. Very limited use case.


    Most computers come with ethernet and wifi, two separate network interfaces.

  • Khurt Williams Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    So the answer his question instead of correcting me?

  • Khurt Williams Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    He said:

     

     

    I have several iPads (1 and 2) but they are all Wi-Fi only models so I'm hoping someone can answer the question for me.

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