Tag Archives | Printers

Using a PC? You Definitely Have Annoyances

Mac users must be sworn to secrecy; they rarely complain about their computers. A friend, plied with alcohol, reluctantly admitted that his MacBook suffered from random shutdowns. Like, no!

PC users, on the other hand, seem to be proud of their computing annoyances. Online bragging matches are common, with each participant trying to top all the other PC disaster stories.

You think I’m kidding about Mac and PC users? Try this on for size: Mac people vs. PC people: Top 5 differences. (Thanks to TechBite subscriber Gil.)

This week’s story is a collection (okay, a hodgepodge) of ways my PC annoys me, with, of course, work-arounds.

Continue Reading →


Lexmark’s Genesis is Like a Photo Booth for Your Documents

All of a sudden, ink jet printer companies are trying out some radically new designs–ones that stray far afield from printer form factors that have changed very little over the past fifteen years or so.¬†Last month, HP announced the Envy 100, a low-profile all-in-one that looks rather like a 1980s-era VCR. And now Lexmark is unveiling the Genesis, an unusually high-profile all-in-one. The tall-boy design has a purpose: It permits for a thirty-percent smaller footprint. And Lexmark accomplished it by incorporating a scanner that’s unlike any I’ve seen before.

Continue Reading →

No comments

New HP Printers: One's Got a Tablet. One Looks Like a VCR. And One's the World's Tiniest Color Laser

Many things have changed about printers over the past fifteen years or so. One that hasn’t is the basic form factors. Both inkjets and lasers may have gotten slicker, sleeker, and more space-efficient, but most of the change has been evolutionary rather than revolutionary.

Today, however, HP is announcing a bunch of new printers and all-in-ones–and three of them are strikingly new, in three strikingly different ways. I was recently briefed by the company and saw the new models in person.

Continue Reading →


HP's ePrint: Print From Devices With No Printing Support

Major development this morning: The iPad can finally print! But this breakthrough isn’t being unveiled at Apple’s WWDC keynote. Apple can’t take any credit for it, either–and actually, the news also involves the iPhone, Android phones, BlackBerrys, other smartphones, and other devices that do e-mail and file attachments.

This Monday-morning eye-opener is being announced by HP printing honcho V.J. Joshi at an event in New York. It’s a new feature called ePrint that HP is building into a trio of all-in-one printers. The goal is audacious: enable printing from gadgets that have no built-in support for printing, without requiring so much as installing an app. It’s a logical one for HP to pursue, given that devices that can’t print can’t help consumers use up ink. And the way HP did it is surprisingly simple: It built drivers into the printers themselves, and gave them Wi-Fi networking and e-mail addresses.

Continue Reading →


Lexmark's Smart and Economical Printer

I think we’ve got the razor-blade method of marketing printers figured out: Sell the printer for a couple of bucks, then gouge and exploit us on cartridges. I hate it.

Lexmark makes its money the old-fashioned way. It sells printers at higher-than-competitor’s printers, but then sells the ink cartridges at reasonable prices.

I tried the Lexmark Prestige Pro805 multifunction printer for over a month (I won’t review something unless I have decent hands-on time, despite howling from the PR people).

Amazon discounts the Lexmark Prestige Pro805 for $200, which is about what others discount it for. The Pro85 uses four single-ink cartridges. When purchasing directly from Lexmark, you’ll pay $5 for black and $10 for color. Shipping is free and Lexmark’s recycling program gives you two free cartridges for every five you buy and return empty in a year.

Continue Reading →


TechBite: CES Finds, a Personal Radar Gun, Epson’s All-in-One, and a Better Download Manager

CES: Winners and Losers

I spent three days at the not-as-big-as-before Consumer Electronics Show. I ignored the behemoth booths — Microsoft, Panasonic, Casio — and focused on the smaller, more interesting companies along the edge of the exhibit floor. I spotted some innovative products:

  • A smartphone app that turns off e-mail and texting features if the speed of your vehicle exceeds five miles per hour.
  • Lexmark’s multifunction printer that has something very appealing: Lexmark ink cartridges for under $5.
  • Fashionable 3D eyeglasses for when you can afford a 3D plasma screen.
  • Something to bring your electronic gadget back to life if you drop it in water.
  • A video camera the size of a flash drive with two hours of recording time.

I have lots more, including a report on Terk’s Hi-Def internal and external antennas and a new-style rechargeable battery. Below is my first blurb about a portable radar device; more next week.
Continue Reading →

One comment

Lexmark Does Touchscreen Printing

Lexmark LogoLast month, HP unveiled an $399 all-in-one inkjet printer with a Web-connected color touchscreen that runs applets for tasks such as printing coupons, movie tickets, and Google Maps. Today, Lexmark announced an all-new lineup of inkjet all-in-ones–and no less than three of ’em are equipped with touchscreens. People, we have a trend here.

The Lexmark (top) and HP (bottom) touchscreens are the same size (4.3″) and look strikingly similar–actually, both look rather like iPhones affixed to the front of a black-and-silver printer:

Lexmark touchscreen

HP TouchSmart screen

However, Lexmark is using its touch technology–which it’s calling myTouch with SmartSolutions (not to be confused with T-Mobile’s myTouch 3G phone)–for quite different purposes than HP’s. The Lexmark printers, unlike HP’s consumery model, are designed for use in small- and medium-sized businesses. Lexmark’s screens are Web-enabled (they let you scan documents and e-mail them without a PC being involved, and include a simple RSS reader) but don’t let you print Web content directly in the way that HP’s does. Instead, Lexmark mostly uses the screen to simplify tasks that you’d normally accomplish with the dedicated plastic keys that most printers have. And the SmartSolutions part of myTouch with SmartSolutions is a nifty-looking feature that lets you save multiple custom sets of settings for use by different people–potentially pretty handy in offices where folks share a printer.

Lexmark’s starting price point is also half of HP’s $399: The company will release touchscreen printers for $199, $299, and $399, with varying sets of features. They’re not due to ship until September 1st (HP’s printer is also supposed to show up this Fall). I hope to get my hands on one for a review.