Yesterday, reports suggested that support for Apple’s AirPrint feature had been plucked from iOS 4.2 for shared printers connected to Macs and PCs, leaving only a subset of AirPrint-compatible HP printers mentioned in the official developer documentation.
Has Apple just had last minute compatibility problems they’re not willing to delay their iOS 4.2 update for, or has the AirPrint feature been canceled? Not according to Steve Jobs, but unfortunately, his comments on the matter aren’t particularly illuminating.
Writing Steve Jobs personally, a Mac Rumors reader asked:
As a release-day purchaser of an iPad, I was elated when you revealed iOS 4.2 would support AirPrint. Now comes reports AirPrint support has been pulled from 4.2. Between announcements/assurances of the white iPhone, and now the pulling of AirPrint, is Apple going to lose credibility and become known for announcing “vaporware”?
Steve’s reply: “AirPrint has not been pulled. Don’t believe everything you read.”
That response would be more comforting if it was a total denial, but as we previously mentioned, AirPrint support for certain HP printers that are being marketed as AirPrint-compatible does still appear to be in iOS 4.2.
So what’s the real story here? Is Apple having compatibility problems with other printers, or have they realized that they can make money off of bestowing AirPrint-compatibility on printers willing to pay the fee, a la “Made for iPod?”