■ Smartphones, TVs
Q: My printer is getting old, but seems to
work OK. Should I consider an upgrade?
Tech Connection column.
electronics or computers
phone’s media—such as videos, photos and games—on
your big-screen television.
In some cases, you’ll need
a cable (such as HDMI) to
connect the smartphone to
the television, but many
“smart TVs” let you wirelessly
push content from your
nearby smartphone to the
television. There are a few different technologies that can
facilitate this, such as DLNA,
discussed in the February 2013
While most solutions require a
Wi-Fi network, the latest smart TVs
offer a direct Wi-Fi connection with
compatible smartphones and tablets.
Therefore, they don’t need a wire-
less network at all.
The latest Samsung TVs also
offer screen mirroring, which is
even better than DLNA.
Whatever you do with the
smartphone or tablet on your
lap, such as browsing the Web,
flicking through photos, reading email or watching video
shot on your phone, is mirrored
on the big screen in front of you,
in real time. (I’ve tested it using a
Galaxy S4 smartphone, Galaxy camera and Galaxy Note 8.0 tablet.)
you purchased at
Costco? Email them to:
Or mail to:
Q&A with Marc Saltzman
The Costco Connection
P.O. Box 34088
Seattle, WA 98124-1088
or fax to (425) 313-6718.
I would be remiss not to mention that
many smartphones and tablets today—especially
Android devices—have an integrated IR (infrared)
blaster, allowing you to use your smartphone as a
universal remote to control your TV, cable or satellite box, Blu-ray Disc player and so on. I like turning my tablet into a home-theater command center
Some phones also let you download electronic
program guides, so you can see what’s on TV,
browse the listings, record a show to watch later and
so on, based on your television provider and the city
you’re in. C
“Marc Saltzman Q&A”
in the subject line. Marc
will answer selected ques-
tions in this column. We
regret that unpublished
questions cannot be
A: If your printer still works but you’re mulling a
newer model, consider donating your aging equipment to a local organization that could benefit from
it, or give it to a family member or friend as a high-tech hand-me-down. Remember: Reusing (or
reselling!) is always better than recycling.
You’ll love what’s available today. Not only can
you expect better quality and faster speeds than
what you’re used to, but the latest crop of printers
can also scan, copy and perhaps fax, too (these are
referred to as an “all-in-one” or “multifunction”
printer). They often have large touch screens for
easy navigation, and usually have memory slots and
USB ports to insert a flash card or thumb drive with
photos on it for easy direct printing.
The most exciting feature of the latest
printers, however, is wireless connectivity inside (or even outside) your
home. That means you don’t
need a pesky USB cable to
print documents or photos
from one or more computers. Plus, you can wirelessly
print from your tablet or
smartphone by downloading free apps from the same
manufacturer as your printer.
Many of today’s digital cameras also let you print wirelessly
with compatible printers.
As I hinted, some Web-enabled
printers even let you print while you’re
away from your home or office. You can create an
email address for the device and then send photos
or documents to it. Imagine sending a bunch of
documents to be printed at the office while you’re
on the train to work, so the print job will be done
before you even step in the door. Or perhaps you
could give one of these printers to a non-techie
relative, such as a grandma, and then email photos
of the grandkids to be printed out directly—while
you’re still away on a vacation.
Some models also let you download apps
directly to the printer, allowing you to print Sudoku
puzzles, recipes or coloring sheets for the kids.
Q: I’ve heard that I can use my smart-
Costco offers a complete line
of electronics in the warehouses
and on Costco.com, including
the latest printers and TVs.
Many of these electronics
include free tech support
from Costco Concierge
phone with my TV. Can you explain?
A: Depending on what model of smartphone and
TV you have, you can access all of your smart-
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a leading high-tech
to more than three
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