Business Columns & Blogs

Setting up to print from Chromebook

Q: How do you print from a Google Chromebook?

A: Wireless printers designated as “cloud-ready” are typically the most straightforward to use with a Chrome OS netbook. But if you have an older “classic” Wi-Fi printer without the “Cloud-ready” label, you should still be able to use it with your Chromebook, as long as you have Google’s Chrome browser on a Windows or Mac computer to handle the setup chores. (Google’s YouTube channel has videos that demonstrate how to set up both cloud-ready and “classic” printers to work with a Chromebook.)

If you have a cloud-ready printer already working on your network, sign into your Chromebook and make sure it is connected to the same network as the printer. Click your account’s profile photo and select Settings on the Chromebook. At the bottom of the Settings list, select Advanced, go to the Printing section and choose Printers. Click “Add Printer.” Choose your network’s printer and click Add. (If you do not see your printer, the Chromebook support site has instructions for adding it manually.)

To connect an older Wi-Fi printer to the Google Cloud Print service so your Chromebook can use it, open the Chrome browser on a Windows PC or a Mac and log into your Google account. (You cannot use a Chromebook to directly set up a printer on Google Cloud Print.) Open the Chrome Settings menu on the right side of the browser and click Advanced. Under Printing, select Google Cloud Print and then “Manage Google Cloud Print devices.” Choose your printer and click “Add Printer.”

Certain Hewlett-Packard printer models work with a special Chromebook app to allow printing over a USB cable connection. If you want to print that way, install the HP Print for Chrome extension from the Chrome Web store. Once the extension is installed, the Google Print window should give you the option to select the connected USB printer.

When you have added the printer, press the Control and P keys on the keyboard. Click the Change button next to Destination, select the newly added printer and click Print.

Monitoring cellular data use for apps

Q: Are there any programs that track phone cellular data usage by individual app?

A: Third-party apps often use easy-to-read graphics to break down your phone’s cellular data consumption so you can see just which programs are burning your bytes. Data Usage for Android and iOS and My Data Manager (also for Android and iOS) are among the available options, and your wireless carrier may have its own data-tracking app. However, depending on your device, you may not need extra software.

In iOS 11, open the Settings icon on the home screen and tap Cellular. Scroll down the Cellular Data section to see the total amount of data used in the current period noted above a list of apps allowed to use the cellular connection. (The “current period” is measured between the times you hit the Reset Statistics button at the bottom of the screen — which can be at the beginning of your cellular billing period or whenever you feel like it.)

In the list, you can see the amount of data each app uses displayed under its name. If you want to stop an app from pulling down data over the cellular connection, tap the button on the right side of the screen to restrict its network activity to a Wi-Fi connection.

The steps for checking your data usage in Android vary based on the operating system and device maker. In several versions, start by opening the Settings app, choosing Network & Internet, then tapping Data Usage and Mobile Data Usage. To see how much an app is eating, tap its name in the list to see its total use, its foreground and its background use. Android 7.0 and later has a Data Saver mode that can help save megabytes on a limited plan.