HP to produce better quality, lower-costing InkJet cartridges

By Justin Mann on April 24, 2007, 6:20 PM
It's no secret that printer companies don't make money on their InkJet hardware, relying instead on the obscene markup of the cost of ink to make up the difference. It does so in spades, much to the chagrin of their customers. They so vehemently want the money from selling the ink that companies like HP even try to shut down companies making refill cartridges or generic replacements. All of this equates to a worldwide market of $32 Billion in printer ink. That being said, it seems they are at least somewhat responding to their customers (and the slow erosion of the market to generic ink providers and refill carts), and HP has vowed to produce better quality and lower costing inks:

Customers will be able to buy more than one type of cartridge: from low-cost ink for bulk-printing purposes, to high quality ink for printing photographs. The low-cost ink will cost as little as 10, Hoffman told the German newspaper. He also promised that the price of printers will not rise as a result.
The statement was given in Europe, more than a stones throw away from the U.S. , so hopefully they plan to make this a worldwide change and not region-specific. When you stoop down into the entry level range of InkJets, often a color cart replacement can cost you half what the printer did or even more. I say this is well overdue, with the cost of color inks being especially obscene. Then again, you could always just buy a laserjet.




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Poseidonas said:
"I say this is well overdue, with the cost of color inks being especially obscene. Then again, you could always just buy a laserjet."I agree, but LaserJet's (or any laser printer in general) don't have the resolution or number of color combinations that an inkjet offers.Inkjet machines have capabilities of resolutions reaching 9800x4800 dpi (Canon). Currently, laser-based machines reach only 2400x1200dpi.Inkjet inks can be mixed to produce more combinations. Laser-based machines instead resort (and inkjets can do this as well) to creating dots near each other for tricking your eye into thinking its a mixed color.Inkjets can have up to, if not more, than 9 different inks in one printer (HP). Laser-based machines are usually around 4 colors (CMYK).Also, HP has released "DeskJet Pro" and "OfficeJet Pro" series which have ink costs per-page *lower* than that of their laserjet counterparts. These use individual ink tanks of massive sizes. Although they are only 4-colors (CMYK), they do offer more color variance than their LaserJets can manage.
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