*NEWS*KODAK PRINTERS SELLOUT

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*NEWS*KODAK PRINTERS SELLOUT

 user 2007-03-14 at 10:44:00 am Views: 41
  • #17402

    Kodak printer sellout: Are consumers are voting for lower ink prices?
    In
    yesterday’s blog I lamented the fact that my local Staples no longer
    sells HP-compatible ink and toner cartridges, and that the branded
    products cost much more. HP’s move to maximize profits by limiting
    consumer choice could play into the hands of Kodak, a new player in the
    ink jet printer market that’s offering low-cost consumables as a way to
    compete against the entrenched players.If you’re mad as hell and don’t
    want to pay high prices for ink anymore, you may be responsive to
    Kodak’s new line of EasyShare printers. Kodak offers this bargain: you
    pay a bit more for the printer. In return, it will sell you the
    consumables for 50% less than those from HP and other established
    players (a 5-color cartridge is just $14.99; a black cartridge
    $9.99).Kodak has turned the current business model on its head. While
    HP, Lexmark and others virtually give away the “razor” to sell you the
    blades, Kodak expects to make a margin on the hardware. In return it
    will provide cheaper ink. In the long run the total cost of ownership
    should pay off. Kodak says users who buy Kodak paper in quantity and
    use its consumables can print 4 x 6 photos for about 10 cents each -
    about 1/3 the cost of competing printers and about half the cost of
    prints at your local Target or Wal Mart.When Kodak first announced the
    products last month, analysts commenting in a Wall Street Journal story
    were divided on its prospects (Kodak’s Strategy For First Printer –
    Cheaper Cartridges, available to WSJ online subscribers only). While
    some said Kodak’s consumer-friendly move would shake up the industry,
    others said only those customers that print lots of color pictures were
    likely to buy Kodak’s new products.In a posting at The Utility Belt
    blog last month (Kodak printers target the heart of HP’s profit), the
    author previewed the printers and came away impressed. His summary: “HP
    should worry.”It’s too early to say for sure, but judging by the
    initial response, Kodak may have hit a nerve with buyers. The product
    line launched this month exclusively with Best Buy. A check of the Best
    Buy Web site this morning showed that Kodak’s $149 low-end model, the
    EasyShare 5100 All-in-One Photo Printer/Copier/Scanner, was already
    sold out.But will the new printer line from Kodak perform as well as
    products from HP and its established rivals? The 5100 supposedly
    creates color prints at 22 pages per minute and can generate a 4″ x 6″
    photo print in 28 seconds. I haven’t seen one yet. Perhaps readers
    could weigh in. Would you buy a Kodak?