RealTime IT News

HP to Roll Out Web-enabled Printers

Who better to light the path to Internet-accessible printers than Hewlett-Packard Co.? HP Tuesday debuted a series of LaserJet printers that allow consumers to scan documents directly to the Web, as well as manage printers from afar with wireless devices like handhelds amd cell phones.

"The explosion of Internet connectivity within organizations and the proliferation of wireless devices have created a tremendous need for our customers to better access and share information and images anytime, anywhere and in any format," said Vyomesh Joshi, president, HP imaging and printing systems.

Indeed, IDC forecasts that 35 percent of the devices connected to the Internet will be non-PC based by 2004. Weili Su, printing and imaging analyst for IDC, said the "new printers provide HP customers with compelling reasons to upgrade and will continue to fuel growth in HP's imaging and printing business."

The new, fast LaserJet printers support multiple operating systems, including Linux. The printers' specifications include, from highest- to lowest-end:

  • HP LaserJet 4100 -- a high-performance workgroup printer for business environments, the HP LaserJet 4100 printer incorporates HP Chaiserver Embedded Virtual Machine (EVM) technology, which allows users to execute Java applications to conduct e-services of mobile devices. It's priced at $1,099 and scheduled to hit the street today
  • HP LaserJet 3200 and 3200m -- designed for small offices and telecommuters, these models perform multitasking capabilities including printing, copying, faxing and color scan-to-Web features. The 3200 is $599; 3200m is $699. Both are slated for an April 1 release
  • HP LaserJet 2200 -- created for small businesses, the HP LaserJet 2200 printer has an infrared port for wireless printing from mobile devices. With a browser, users can monitor basic printer and network configuration capabilities with an HP Jetdirect network card. Priced at $799 -- due April 1
  • HP LaserJet 1200 and 1220 -- geared to provide professional output for personal business users. The 1220 printer can scan and send color documents via e-mail, convert documents to digital format for editing and storage, and scan color images to the Web. 1200 is $399; the 1220 is $529. Both will debut April 1.

While four of the five LaserJet printer series are marked to hit the market by April Fool's Day, HP has scheduled a print server appliance for a May 1 release. The HP Print Server Appliance 4200, which will replace the Jetdirect 4000 print appliance, features a point-and-print function that automates the installation of printers. Priced at $1,999, the appliance off-loads spooling and printing services from general purpose file servers to improve IT management, installation and administration of network printing services.