HP Accused Of Expiring Ink Cartridges

from the must-use-by... dept

What is it with printer manufacturers and their increasingly sophisticated means of screwing over the customers who buy ink from them? Even going beyond various attempts at using technology to block out competition, printer makers have long been accused of having their printers claim a cartridge is empty when it's still 25% full. However, some consumers are claiming that HP goes a step further, and includes a "must use by" date encoded in the chip in their ink cartridges, meaning that if you don't use the ink by a certain date, no HP printer will let you use it any more. It's not clear if the complaint focuses on the fact that this exists at all, or (more reasonably) that the expiration date isn't given to consumers. HP's defense, of course, will most likely be to point out that older cartridges may clog up, causing damage to the printers. Which may, in fact, be true. However, without telling the buyer that the cartridge expires, they may have opened themselves up to trouble, as many people will assume the cartridges will remain good.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    Steve, 1 Mar 2007 @ 2:58pm

    HP Ink Cartridges

    It has been long known that HP makes its billions of dollars of profit each year primarily from their imagining and printing group. 90% of all profit from this division comes from the sale of printer ink. HP's IPG strategy was changed more then 10 years ago to one which employees extremely inexpensive printer cost as a drive safe which is made up for in the consumables required to use the printer itself. They have initiated many law suits against refill kit companies over the years with little success. Class action law suits have gone on for years at a time with fines eventually being levied against HP to settle the suits which in comparison to the profit they make is pennies on the dollar. Not until some legislation is put before the government will this practice ever be changed. I suggest the millions of unhappy customers to start writing your congressmen to start some type of restriction to this monopoly HP has over its practices. After all I purchased the equipment from HP not leased. If I want to assume the liability of using a non HP cartridge I should have every right to do so with out HP controlling my equipment. Considering my warranty is no longer valid after a period of 90 days or one year, what ever it is, HP should not have the right to program my equipment from working if I do not use their replacements. That would be like Microsoft programming my computer to not work if I choose to use word perfect for my word processor over Microsoft Office. I own a high monthly volume printer which will do 30,000 pages a month of which I only print less then 75 to 100 pages of month. I have yet to use a cartridge completely before it has rendered my printer inoperable. My HP Cartridge Replacement retails for over $50 each which requires four cartridges to operate. Even if I only need a black and white page printed it will not work with an expired color cartridge making it useless. This brings my business to a stand still at my slow time of the year with little to no operating cash flow in which to purchase $200 worth of replacement cartridges of which I do not need. If I could afford the high priced lawyers which HP has on retainer I would sue the pants off of them and own a portend of the company. I suffer, my company suffers, and worse of all my clients suffer because of this unethical money sucking grip they have on me. Lets all pull together and get our government representatives working on a solution for this issue. Thanks so much for joining the team to fight these big corporate pimps.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: I Invented Email
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.