A wireless adapter is used to provide printers that do not have integrated Wi-Fi capabilities with wireless connectivity to an office or home wireless local area network, or WLAN. The wireless adapter is usually in the form of an external module that is plugged into the printer's USB port.

Every printer manufacturer has their own wireless adapter that is compatible with their printers. Each adapter typically comes with an installation disk that is used for initial setup. After the wireless adapter has properly been successfully setup, the printer functions the same way as a regular wired printer. Making a home or office printer wireless allows multiple users to utilize the printer as a network resource.