The Japanese company Epson has announced that it is to drop its laser printers altogether, concentrating its efforts on products that use ink. The reason for the decision is sustainability, as ink printers are much more energy efficient and also more efficient in long-term operation, requiring fewer consumables.
Ink printers will remain in Epson’s offering
Epson says its laser printer distribution now has an end date set for 2026. Starting this year, Epson will no longer sell products that print with lasers, but will still offer supplies and maintenance for customers who still own such printers. The company will thus focus on inkjet products that have “greater potential” in the company’s view to provide a “significant advance” in protecting the environment.
“We are committed to innovation and sustainable action, and inkjet simply uses less energy and fewer consumable components. While laser printers work by heating and sticking toner on the page, Epson’s injket heatless technology consumes less electricity, using mechanical energy to print ink on the page.”, say company representatives.
According to Epson, laser printers produce 85% more carbon dioxide, and ink printers have 59% fewer components to change: ink and ink waste receptacle. But the company now offers ink alternatives that can print 40 to 60 pages per minute, similar to the performance of laser printers, whose main advantage was speed.
However, it is ironic that Epson talks about sustainability, as the company has ink printer models for sale that “self-destruct” after a certain amount of time. The only ways to bring affected printers back to “life” are a one-time software “reactivation” or a service visit. Of course, replacement would be Epson’s preferred method of selling another printer in the future.
The company says it created these auto-locking products to avoid printer damage, such as ink leaking onto furniture, or electrical components, which could lead to more serious damage.