*NEWS*COST OF INK CTGS DRIVES REFILL IND

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*NEWS*COST OF INK CTGS DRIVES REFILL IND

 user 2007-04-02 at 10:19:00 am Views: 60
  • #17414

    Cost of inkjet cartridges drives refill market
    It is said that nothing is certain but death and taxes.Add “paying too much for inkjet cartridges” to that list.
    Small-business
    owner Amanda Newman runs through a black ink cartridge for her HP
    printer about once a week. List price for an original equipment
    replacement is $14.99, but she pays $8 for a refill at Indianapolis’
    Carmel Ink and Toner.That’s a savings of nearly $364 a year.”I take in
    the empty one, and they give me one that’s been refilled,” said Newman,
    who owns Carmel Consignment. “I don’t see a difference.”Overall,
    printer ink is a $32 billion market worldwide, said Jim Forrest, a
    senior analyst for Lyra Research, which studies the desktop printer
    market.Nearly six of 10 U.S. households have a computer, according to a
    May 2006 GAO Telecommunications Report. It seems a safe bet that most
    of those computers come attached to a printer.It’s almost like the
    monthly cable bill: You’ll complain and whine about it, but you know
    you’re going to pay.One reason cartridge prices are so high is because
    so many different cartridges are out there, said Marketing Professor
    Dan McQuiston of Butler University. And none is compatible with the
    other.”Absolutely that drives the prices up,” McQuiston said. “That’s
    probably done by design.”Another issue is dumping — printer
    manufacturers may be selling their printers at or below cost just to
    get you locked into their high-priced replacement cartridges.With new
    inkjet printers costing as little as $49 to $69 already loaded with
    ink, one may be forgiven for wondering why combo prices for
    black-and-white and color cartridges cost almost as much.

    You can nibble away at those high prices though.
    Some
    office supply stores, such as OfficeMax, will give you a $3 discount on
    your in-store purchase if you recycle an old inkjet cartridge.Others,
    such as Office Depot, will give you a ream of copy paper in exchange
    for your spent cartridge.Walgreens recently rolled out an inkjet refill
    service at many of its photo labs. About 1,500 of the chain’s more than
    5,000 stores now offer the service.Jessica Walker, a photo specialist
    at the store, said she refills up to 20 cartridges in a shift.