For organisations looking to reduce the time and cost of managing their print environment, Microsoft has good news. Their new cloud print service, Microsoft Universal Print, is now live and available to businesses and educational organisations.
Universal Print eliminates the need for on-premises infrastructure and enables IT to manage printers directly through a centralised portal.
Universal Print also simplifies the printing experience for end-users who can print from anywhere when connected to the internet and authenticated to Azure AD. There’s no need to install printer drivers, and Universal Print’s location-based printing capabilities makes it easy to locate the nearest printer and print right away.
Organisations with selected Windows or Microsoft 365subscriptions (Business Premium, Enterprise and Education) can activate the Universal Print benefits for their workers today.
Ricoh and Lexmark have both developed native support for Universal Print across a wide range of printer and multi-function device models.
Native Universal Print support offers the following benefits to customers:
- Administrators can distribute printers to Azure AD joined Windows devices.
- Users can print directly to the cloud-configured service from any Windows device when connected to the internet and authenticated to Azure AD (Active Directory).
- Printers with native support of Universal Print will not require an on-premises print server or printer driver installation.
- There is a function to set the user privileges, so users can only print to those printers.
- Data is encrypted during transfer over the network and when stored in non-volatile storage.
- Printers without native support for Universal Print can be use with the Universal Print connector to take advantage of the Universal Print benefits.
- Centralised print reporting capabilities allow IT admins to view print job history and usage reports.