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HP Announces "Big Bang" Printer Launch
New Printing Process May Be Quantum Leap
By: ITSG News Desk
Jul. 12, 2005 10:00 AM
Many have no doubt forgotten that it was HP that brought great innovation to the personal computer printing market, with breakthroughts in inkjet and laser printing in the 80s that transformed the industry. HP continues to be a market leader in printing, and its printing division the most profitable area of the entire company.
Now comes word that the company may have achieved another quantum leap, announcing what it calls "a breakthrough ink-based printing platform." HP says it has invested $1.4 billion over the past five years to develop a new scalable printing technology that will "catapult its leadership in the printer market
years ahead of its competitors."
Designed specifically to
deliver high-performance printing for high-volume users, the new products wre announced ruing what HP calls its "Big Bang" announcement, and include
the world's fastest home photo printing devices, which can produce 4 x 6-inch photos in
as fast as 14 seconds, as well as the world's fastest
desktop color business printer, which enables small and medium-size
businesses to print up to twice the speed and 30 percent lower cost-per-page than color laser printers.
The printhead components are fabricated as one unit via a photolithographic process, rather than welded together in post-production. This results in the precise alignment of the chamber, nozzles and heating element, which then improves the accuracy of ink drop placement. This unique design also supports an increased density of nozzles, with 3,900 nozzles or more on a single printhead. More nozzles and increased dot placement accuracy translates into faster, high-quality prints. Additionally, the new printing system ensures that users will never run out of ink mid-page - eliminating a source of wasted ink and paper.
Because the new platform is scalable, HP is able to address the diverse needs of the printing market, from high-volume consumer users and small to medium-size businesses all the way up to the commercial market. This is made possible in three technical ways.
First, HP can increase the size of the swath - the area the
printhead covers with each pass over a page. With larger swathes, the
printhead needs to make fewer passes over a page, thus leading to
increased speeds. Second, HP can increase the number of nozzles on the
printhead to allow for higher quality, larger prints. And third, HP can
increase the number of inks per printhead, providing a richer color
"Today marks a milestone in HP's 21-year printing history," said
Vyomesh Joshi, executive vice president, Imaging and Printing Group,
HP. "This technology is the next step in our business transformation -
the master key that unlocks new market opportunities and further growth
in our printer business. Today's announcement will create a new
perspective and experience around printing in the home, in the office
and for the entire industry needing digital prints."
High-volume printers based on the new platform
Another highlight is the HP Photosmart 420 series GoGo Photo Studio, which includes a camera and a printer with a dock. This gives consumers a complete portable photo system and the ability to print photos in three steps - snap, dock, print. Pricing begins at $299.
HP has also extended its portfolio of printing systems to offer its most affordable supplies and printer combination ever. Designed for lower usage applications and optimized for ease-of-use and budget-conscious customers, these systems provide a new entry point of $14.99 and $17.99 for HP 21 (black) and 22 (color) cartridges, respectively, matched with printers starting at $49.99.
Adding to its award-winning line of digital cameras, HP introduced the HP Photosmart R818, R817 and M517 digital cameras, which range in price from $149 to $399. The HP Photosmart R818 and R817 digital cameras feature new HP Real Life Technologies so consumers can not only preview panorama photos, but can now stitch them together inside the camera, allowing for easy printing of panorama photos without a computer.
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