Let's face it: smartphone adoption isn't close to universal, and the average non-student probably doesn't print documents on a regular basis. But today, Google launched Google Cloud Print for mobile documents and Gmail for mobile, an interesting service that introduces new options concerning when and where people can print.
Google's billing this as "a service that allows printing from any app on any device, OS or browser without the need to install drivers." It's currently rolling out in beta, with the main catch being that would-be users must use a Windows PC to connect their printers to Cloud Print. (Linux and Mac support are supposed to be on the way.)
Also, penny pinchers should note that they'll have to leave their printers on a lot more, driving up the electric bill.
Otherwise, a post on the Google Mobile Blog explained, "Imagine printing an important document from your smartphone on the way to work and finding the printout waiting for you when you walk in the door. Just open a document in Google Docs or an email in Gmail in your mobile browser and choose 'Print' from the dropdown menu in the top right corner."
Then the post continued, "You can also print certain kinds of email attachments (such as .pdf or .doc) by clicking the 'Print' link that appears next to them."
Google Cloud Print for mobile documents and Gmail for mobile is sure to find a few fans out there due to all this flexibility, at least.