Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Scrimping and printing

Hewlett-Packard’s not doing so well:

On Tuesday, H.P. showed how its printer business remained vulnerable to the recession when it reported third-quarter financial results. H.P.’s printing and imaging revenue fell 20 percent, to $5.7 billion, as sales of supplies tumbled 13 percent and sales of printers fell 23 percent.
Says Mark V. Hurd, Hewlett-Packard’s chief executive, “People are printing just as much as they did last year.” Hurd blames lower sales of supplies on currency fluctuations, inventory adjustments, and consumer reluctance to stock up.

Stocking up, at least on ink-jet cartridges, is never a good idea — the carts dry out and become unusable. But it’s my printing (not buying) habits that make me doubt Hurd’s explanations. I suspect that many people are doing exactly as I am: printing less, not so much perhaps to save money as to not waste ink. I’m much more inclined now to tinker and tweak in pixels for a good long time before printing a draft to edit by hand.

The Times says that in response to lower sales, Hewlett-Packard “has been scrambling to raise prices.”

H.P. Tries to Keep the Ink Flowing (New York Times)

comments: 2

Genevieve Netz said...

I bought a little Brother laser printer a few months ago, and I love it. On the starter toner cartridge that came free with the printer, I've printed three old Google Books for my husband -- over 900 pages front and back. And that doesn't count the ruined pages when I didn't get the fronts and backs matched right and the other miscellaneous printing I've done.

In fact, we like the Brother HL2140 so well that we got another for my son to take to college. We got it at Newegg for $68 and free shipping. Hard to beat.

The Brother replaces an HP inkjet printer which we loathed. It printed a test page every time it was powered on -- a big waste of ink. We had to hand-feed paper into it, one page at a time, because it was incapable of feeding itself. I was really happy when that printer decided not to work anymore, although it was not very old, really -- we had it less than 2 years.

I don't wish HP ill, but they need to scramble on more than raising their prices.

Michael Leddy said...

Genevieve, if I weren’t already convinced, your experience would be enough to convince me to get a laser printer next time. I have one in my office that’s been on the same cartridge for well over a year. For plain printing, it can’t be beat.