Wednesday, March 6, 2024

HP All-In Plan

Scharon Harding:

HP launched a subscription service today that rents people a printer, allots them a specific amount of printed pages, and sends them ink for a monthly fee. HP is framing its service as a way to simplify printing for families and small businesses, but the deal also comes with monitoring and a years-long commitment.


But HP enforces an Internet connection by having its TOS also state that HP may disrupt the service—and continue to charge you for it—if your printer is not online.

The All-In-Plan privacy policy also says that HP may “transfer information about you to advertising partners” so that they can “recognize your devices,” perform targeted advertising, and, potentially, “combine information about you with information from other companies in data sharing cooperatives” that HP participates in. The policy says that users can opt out of sharing personal data.

Wes Davis (Hacker News):

Which printer you get depends on the plan you choose. They start at $6.99 per month for 20 pages’ worth of prints and whatever the current HP Envy model is, and go all the way up to a $35.99-a-month affair that gets you an OfficeJet Pro and 700 pages. If you go over your page allotment, HP will add more for a dollar per block of 10–15 pages.


The subscription, like HP’s recent ad campaign promoting its printers as “made to be less hated,” trades on the idea that printers are frustrating commodities. The company’s configurator page mentions bonuses like “continuous printer coverage” and “next-business-day printer replacement,” for instance. That way, if a firmware upgrade blue-screens your printer, at least you have some recourse that doesn’t involve driving to a store to buy a whole new one.


Update (2024-03-07): Karl Bode (Hacker News):

Paying for the same several-hundred dollar printer for all eternity is precisely the sort of concept Lores has been pushing for a while. The problem is it’s not clear that anybody actually wants this. It’s also not really clear that paying up to $36 for a printer you never really own makes much value sense. Printers inherently aren’t that expensive. And ink isn’t either, if companies aren’t being restrictive tyrants.


Once they’ve established renting a printer as a norm, they’ll just steadily jack the rental price skyward as they make the underlying value proposition steadily worse. Ultimately the business becomes less and less about making popular quality products, and more and more about making unnecessarily convoluted subscriptions with creative restrictions and ever-skyrocketing monthly prices.

Update (2024-03-25): Wendigoon8 (2022):

Our HP printer hasn’t been working for a month and every manner of troubleshooting, resets, changing ink cartridges, didn’t seem to work. After calling HP, they said the debit card on file had expired so they manually disabled our printer.

5 Comments RSS · Twitter · Mastodon

Looks like I won't be buying any more HP printers...

Kevin Schumacher

This is so gross I don't even know where to start.

I guess I can't blame them: my kids (one in high school, one a grad student) rarely, maybe twice a year, need to print something. This is clearly no longer a growing source of revenue for HP -- might as well get weird with it?

I have a 16-year old workhorse LaserJet that they can pry from my cold dead hands.

Epson and Brother still seem to be doing it right, but who knows how long that will last. Epson is eschewing the DRM-ed inkjet cartridges that have infected the rest of the industry and just allows you to pour bottles of inexpensive replacement ink directly into their printers. Brother makes a cheap, simple, and reliable laser printer for everyone.

Looks like I've bought my last HP printer. Well, I guess that would be true anyway, but I can't see any way in hell I would ever get involved with HP now.

Interesting to see HP delivering the final push to a paperless world.

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