Last Updated on October 16, 2020 by Husain Parvez
A portable printer for iPhone or Android can be just the work tech accessory you need to get things done on the go. Here’s are the best portable iPhone photo printer available on the market right now, and some pointers on what factors to consider before getting one.
We humans may not be a boon to Mother Nature when it comes to a sustainable environment, but we’re getting there. Over the years, activism and policies, along with intervention from the corporates have done well when it comes to steering us towards a paperless future. Saving trees while having the ease of use that comes with e-documents is a win-win situation for everyone. But there are times when you simply cannot do without a physical paper, which is why printers continue to exist. Smartphones have played a larger role in eliminating tech products that were once considered bare essential, like the document scanner, which has now been replaced by apps such as CamScanner.
Digital cameras had eliminated physical photographs decades ago and then came along smartphones, which put digital cameras to rest too. However, sharing a physical memento is far less iconic than sending someone an image via WhatsApp, which is why you find an assortment of the best photo printer for iPhone by the dozen. Keeping portability in mind, manufacturers have upped the ante with a new range of portable printer for iPhone and Android that you could carry around in a single hand. Whether you wish to capture a fleeting moment and grab a printed photo, or need to access a crucial work document for physical signing, it’s all possible with portable iPhone printers.
Best Portable Printer for iPhone to Buy
It all started off with a portable photo printer for iPhone that was brought to the market by photography giants such as Kodak and Canon. Owing to the popularity of the iPhone camera for its vibrant images, there are plenty of affordable and high-quality iPhone photo printers available today. However, there are only a handful of traditional document printers for iPhone or Android that you will find online. The technology is relatively new and upgrading with each new release, but the portable printers for iPhones that are currently offered by legacy brands such as Brother and Canon deliver good quality, which comes at a price. Here’s our curated list of the best photo printers and document printers for iPhone that you can get your hands on right now.
1. HP Sprocket 2-in-1 – Best Portable Printer with Camera
HP is a well-known player when it comes to home and office printers. Now you can get the same reliable printing with HP Sprocket 2-in-1 on the go without the hassle of refilling the ink cartridges and the convenience of carrying around with your adventures. The HP Sprocket (Gen 2) is a smartphone-sized printer and uses ZINK (zero ink technology papers) for high-quality printing images from iPhones and Android phones.
Build Quality: The portable Bluetooth HP Sprocket 2-in-1 printer fits right into the palms, and it is as easy to carry around in a bag or a purse. The chassis is made of dense plastics and can survive some drops, with matte textured color coating.
Features: The HP Sprocket 2-in-1 uses ZINK technology for printing on the go with their proprietary 2 x 3 inches sticky-backed photo paper, which is easy to load up in the printer by sliding the top of the printer. The comfortable one press pair connecting and LED indicators, and the HP Sprocket app handles the rest of the functions. The printer charges and connects to a PC over Micro-USB.
APP and Connectivity: With Bluetooth 5.0, the HP Sprocket 2-in-1 can be paired with any Bluetooth enabled devices. After pairing, you can choose which pictures you wish to print and edit your pictures all in the HP Sprocket app for iOS and Android devices. The app allows for multiple users to use the portable printer for a fun printing nostalgia session.
2. Canon SELPHY CP 1300 – Best Overall Photo Printer for iPhone
We all are familiar with Canon’s professional cameras and home and office printers. But, nor can we fit big cameras and home printers in our pockets and bags. With your smartphone and the Canon SELPHY CP 1300 Portable Printer, you can click pictures and have them printed on the go with the battery pack add on for portable printer to capture the moments in a high resolution 4×6 borderless sticky back pictures with the convenience of physical controls and a preview screen on the printer.
Build Quality: The SELPHY CP1300 printer is well built with dense, matt plastics and black colorways. The IVY is not as portable as the HP Sprocket but can be carried around in a bag for stationery use.
Features: The Canon SELPHY CP1300 uses proprietary ink cartridges and paper to print high resolution 4×6 inches sticky back pictures. The portable printer features an array of physical buttons and a 3.2 inch LCD screen for previewing the settings and images which you choose to print. With the battery pack add on, you can carry your printer anywhere you want.
App and Connectivity: The CP1300 comes with a USB connector for PC. For mobile devices, the printer can be connected via Wi-Fi. With the Canon Print App, you can choose from your device gallery for printing and have editing functions right from the app for adding effects and filters.
3. LifePrint 2×3 Printer – Most Affordable Portable Photo Printer
The Lifeprit is the most bang for the buck and budget Bluetooth portable printer on this list with the zero ink technology there is on the market. With the Lifeprint portable printer, you can print 2×3 inches of borderless sticky back pictures on the go to capture the adventures clicked on your phone to a glossy photo paper hard copy image. The Lifeprint comes with black, blue, red, white, and lilac purple colorways to choose from.
Build Quality: The Lifeprint portable Bluetooth printer uses dense plastics for the chassis and matt colorways to reduce greasy fingerprints and smudges on the aesthetically pleasing design. It is easy to carry around in a bag, purse, or pockets if one tries.
Features: The Lifeprint uses ZINK technology to print borderless 2×3 inches sticky back images with their proprietory ZINK papers, which are easy to load up in the printer by sliding the printer’s top. There is just a single button to power the device and pair it via Bluetooth. The rest of the magic happens in the Lifeprint app on Android and iOS devices.
App and Connectivity: The Lifeprint has a Micro USB port for charging and connecting to a PC. The portable printer connects with Bluetooth enabled devices and smartphones with the Lifeprint Photo app. The app gives users plenty of editing and filter effects options for printing pictures from their phone gallery, and the Lifeprint Community sharing feature allows users to send images to their friend’s Lifeprinter directly for printing their favorite memories and wishes.
4. Canon Pixma TR150 – Best Mobile Printer for iPhone
If you need the features of a full-fledged printer which can print A4 size documents and images and which is relatively portable, the CanonPixma TR150 is the best option for you. Although it requires an additional battery add on for portability, the print quality and compact size is a perfect option for professionals who need document printing on the go. And the Pixma TR150’s software features give a lot of convenience for reprinting multiple copies, which can be saved locally on the printer.
Build Quality: The Pixma TR150 uses dense matt plastics for the chassis, and it is well built. With the battery pack add on, the printer is reasonably easy to carry around in a bag or briefcase.
Features: The TR150 being a portable printer, features all the functions from a regular home office printer with button controls, LCD monochrome display, and a top-loaded paper feeder. The printer has some on-board memory to save documents on the printer and have them printed, which you need to print frequently. The printer uses Canon proprietary ink cartridges. The add on battery pack has LED indicators and can be charged using an external battery power pack.
App and Connectivity: The printer connects via Wi-Fi with smartphones and PC. With the Canon Print app, you can choose documents and images from the device. The TR150 is also compatible with Mopria for Android devices, Google Drive, and Apple AirPrint for iOS devices.
5. ZINK Polaroid – Best for Editing iPhone Photo Printer
In the early stages of the instant cameras, Polaroid was ahead of the time, with their instant film cameras with the ability to print colored pictures from the camera. Now, Polaroid brings back instant printing in the modern age when printing photographs has become again popular among teenagers. The ZINK Polaroid ZIP brings back printing pictures in the modern era with smartphones as the main shooter.
Build Quality: The Polaroid ZIP uses dense, glossy plastics for the chassis and has a small footprint for easy carrying around in a bag or a purse. The ZIP comes in black, blue, red, white, green, and yellow colorways with the signature Polaroid rainbow color accents.
Features: The ZINK Polaroid ZIP Bluetooth Portable Printer uses zero ink technology to print 2×3 inch border-less sticky back photographs using their proprietory Zink papers, which are easy to load up by sliding the top cover and inserting the papers. On a single charge, the ZIP can print out 25 high-resolution pictures from your mobile.
App and Connectivity: The ZIP has Bluetooth built-in, which can be paired with Bluetooth-enabled smartphones. The ZIP charges using a Micro USB port and has LED indicators. With the ZIP paired to the Polaroid ZIP App, you can select or take images and edit photos from the phone gallery and have them printed with effects and filters from the ZIP printer on the go.
6. Fujifilm INSTAX Share SP-2 – Best HD iPhone Photo Printer
If you are looking for photo booth style bordered pictures for printing on the go using your smartphone, The Fujifilm INSTAX Share SP-2 is among the best portable printer for iPhone for smartphone photography. The INSTAX Share SP-2 uses the proprietory Instax Mini instant films for printing images for the nostalgia effect for your phone photography.
Build Quality: The Share SP-S uses dense plastics and a dual-tone color scheme with a darker shade of color for contrast. The printer is a bit chunky for the dimensions but portable than the Mini instant cameras and can be carried around in a bag or a purse.
Features: The sleek Share SP-2 uses laser exposure technology to develop the instant Instax Mini Films in just ten seconds and have vivid colors. There are two buttons on the side for power the device and pairing via a dedicated printer Wi-fi. Signal to devices and a re-printing button for multiple copies of a picture. The printer charges with a Micro USB port, and the battery is removable. LED indicators for film and battery percentage.
App and Connectivity: The Share SP-2 uses Wi-Fi technology to connect with devices and uses the Instax Share app for printing images to the printer. The Instax Share app has many editing and filter effects options to choose from for a unique photograph. The app also lets you print from social media accounts and SNS templates for Instagram and Facebook.
7. Epson DS-80 – Portable Document Scanner
Epson is a well-known brand for its office printer and scanners, which are reliable all the time. With the Epson DS-80, Portable Document Scanner is the best portable document scanner for scanning essential documents on the go. The DS-80 is battery powered, and with Wi-Fi connectivity, you can have your documents scanned with no cable hassles. The scanner is the best for professionals wanting to scan documents for clients anywhere they are.
Build Quality: The DS-80 uses dense matt plastics for the chassis, and its slim bar form factor allows it to fit in any backpack or briefcase.
Features: The Epson DS-80 self-feeding scanner can scan documents in just 4 seconds and has a screen for battery, document, connectivity indicators. The scanner is easy to set up with the power and Wi-Fi physical buttons and pairs with devices quickly.
App and Connectivity: The scanner can be connected with a USB cable for PC and automatically switches over to Wi-Fi battery mode when disconnected with the PC. With the Canan app, you can scan your documents and save them to your PC, Android, iPhone devices.
8. Phomemo M02 – Thermal Pocket Printer for iPhone
Pocket thermal printers are great for students looking for a way to print quick memos and scrapbooking temp plates on the fly and not rely on large printers for the small task, and thermal printers can also print images in monochrome. The Phomemo M02 Thermal Pocket Printer is one of the best iPhone thermal printers out there and can be used as a receipt and QR code printer for small businesses in a small form factor and easy to use the app.
Built Quality: The Phomemo M02 Pocket Thermal Pocket Printer uses dense matte plastics for the chassis, and it is small in size. The small box-shaped printer can be carried in a bag or purse.
Features: The thermal printer uses thermal technology and Bluetooth 5.0 for connectivity and to print in monochrome images, templates, receipts, and QR codes. The printer uses a thermal reel roll with a sticky back surface. With the easy slide top reel fed, you can continuously print your stickers and cut them with the ridged printer slot. The printer has a 1000mah battery and charges with a Micro USB port.
App and Connectivity: The thermal printer operates with a single button for pairing via Bluetooth and connects with the smartphone. The Phomemo app allows you to print out different scrapbooking templates, images from the photo gallery, web printing, and many more useful features for printing for businesses.
9. Kodak Mini 3 Retro – Best Laminating iPhone Photo Printer
The Kodak Mini 3 Retro blends perfectly in the modern world with retro styling and instant film four pass photo print technology in a small and sleek retro form factor for photo printing on the go for adventures. The Mini 3 Retro uses proprietary Kodak ink cartridges with paper, but the end results you get with the printer are amazing, with vivid colors and no fading over the years.
Build Quality: The Kodak Mini 3 Retro has well-built quality with dense, glossy plastics and retro theme accents. The small footprint of the printer can easily be carried in a pocket or a purse.
Features: The Mini 3 retro uses Bluetooth technology to pair with devices. The printer uses four-pass printing technology, which uses Kodak proprietary ink cartridges and paper, which is easy to load with the bottom side slot for the ink cartridge. The printer prints 3×3 inches borderless or bordered photographs with high resolution, vivid colors, and contrast.
App and Connectivity: The Mini 3 Retro pairs with a single button operation and can be connected to Bluetooth devices or PC using a Micro USB port for charging and connectivity. The Kodak Mobile app allows users to add filters, effects, and edit the image before printing the photograph for added fun and memory.
10. Lifeprint 2×3 Instant – Best Instant Printer for iPhone
To have the classic instant film camera experience with the iPhone camera, the Lifeprint Instant Printer for iPhone is the best option for you to take pictures and directly print them from the instant printer, which is mounted at the back of your iPhone. The Lifeprint iPhone instant printer blends both the worlds for modern technology and image photography.
Build Quality: The LifePrint iPhone Instant film printer uses dense matte plastics and has a textured top cover for the paper slot feeder. It comes with a slot for the iPhone to be placed within the chassis itself, so it appears to be like a modern-day polaroid.
Features: The Instant Film printer connects via Bluetooth with Bluetooth enabled devices and iPhones. With the ZINK technology, you can print good quality images with their proprietory ZINK papers, which print out 3×3 inches of sticky back borderless photographs. The clap allows you to attach the printer on the back of the iPhone.
App and Connectivity: With the standard Bluetooth technology, you can connect to any smartphone with the Lifeprint app and has a Micro USB port for charging and LED indicators. The iPhone phone mount allows you to take pictures, edit and add effects and filters from the iPhone and directly print photographs from the printer as an old instant camera. You can also choose images from phone gallery and social media apps to print photographs.
11. HP OfficeJet 200 – Best Office Portable iPhone Printer
HP is a well-known printer and scanner manufacturer for its heavy-duty, reliable printers and scanners for office use. The OfficeJet 200 brings reliable printing in a wireless portable form factor with the controls of a large size format printers. The self-feed printer uses Wi-Fi to connect with devices, has physical buttons for colored or monochrome printed documents, and selects multiple file formats.
Build Quality: The OfficeJet 200 brings a matte black finish that matches the premium quality office printers that the brand is known for. The use of dense plastics for the chassis and the slim bar form factors allow for easy carrying, while the monochrome display makes it easier to navigate through the different features of this mobile printer for iPhone and Android.
Features: The portable printer can be connected to a USB port for PC or Wi-Fi when on battery power mode. The printer has physical buttons for options such as printing the document in color or monochrome, choosing file formats from PDF or JPEG, and a screen to manage the settings. The HP OfficeJet app allows you to connect to Android and iOS devices to save the devices’ documents the easy way for digital use.
What to Look for in a Photo Printer for iPhone?
Despite being a niche market, portable photo printers are sold dime a dozen online, and most of them seem more or less the same. However, if you’re truly a photography enthusiast who likes to consider every fine setting before hitting the shutter button, then you’d also want to make a well-informed purchase when selecting the best iPhone photo printer for the job.
Printer paper and quality – Almost every photo printer for smartphones is sold with a small stock of photo papers right out of the box. However, those are going to run out soon enough and you’ll be out and about looking for refills, which can be a daunting task if your photo printer comes from a lesser-known brand. The size of pictures that you can print also matter, ranging from 2.1 x 2.1 inches all the way up to 4 x 6 inches. Unlike older Polaroids which used an all-in-one cartridge, modern digital photo printers come with zero ink paper which comes with embedded dye crystals.
Connectivity – Digital photo printers come with connectivity options one way or another, either through USB connection of wirelessly via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. The best mobile printer for iPhone would offer the ability to use Apple’s AirPrint feature natively, where you can easily print images with just the touch of a button. However, the more affordable photo printers tend to offer this ability in the form of an iOS app, where you can save, edit, and print images on command.
Features – Although you can always install a third-party app to edit pictures before photo printing them, it is always a preferred option if the editor is built into the printer app. For instance, the HP Sprocket app for its portable photo printer for iPhone comes with the ability to print in minutes. But the reason why users love it is the slew of customization features it offers, with the option to add text, borders, emojis, and even stickers to stylize the final image you’re about to print.
Frequently Asked Questions
What portable printer can I use with iPhone?
Portable printers have been around for years even before the smartphone era took off, but they were only meant for wired use. Modern portable printers are available for both, PC and mobile use, but only the ones with wireless connectivity work with Android and iPhone. If we were to recommend the best photo printer for iPhone, the Canon SELPHY CP910 is the clear winner, with dedicated physical controls, a display to preview and edit images, along with Wi-Fi connectivity for wireless printing. However, if you’re looking for a portable iPhone printer for work, the Canon Pixma TR150 wireless mobile printer, which comes with native Apple AirPrint support and the ability to print documents up to 8.5 x 11 inches.
Can I print from iPhone without AirPrint?
Most of the mobile printers for iPhone available are marketed towards mobile phones for wireless printing. However, under the circumstance where the printer does not support Apple’s AirPrint feature by default, you can still configure it to work with any wireless printer with a direct wireless access point created by the printer.
- Press the Wi-Fi button on the printer to create a wireless access point.
- Head to Settings – Wi-Fi on your iPhone and connect to the wireless printer’s network.
- Find the official app from your printer on the Apple App Store and download it.
- You can even use a third-party app such as Printer Pro by Readdle to manage the wireless printer from your iPhone.
Thanks to the improved printing technology and paper, you can now enjoy premium quality prints even from a portable iPhone printer. Brands still maintain some form of proprietary hold over the ink cartridges for the portable iPhone printers, and the printing slides of iPhone photo printers, which is one factor to consider before buying one. Since you’re always going to need more ink and more photo slides, pick one that not only delivers on quality but offers the add-ons at a reasonable price. Getting important documents printed and ready for signing in an instant, or turning a quick selfie into a lifetime keepsake is now a reality with the best mobile printer for iPhone we’ve listed above.
Are you looking for the best printer for iPhone to get some work done while you travel, or are you a photography enthusiast who wants to turn their iPhone into a modern-day Polaroid camera? Do share your thoughts with us in the comments section down below.
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