Ink jet printers are generally inexpensive to purchase, but expensive to actually use because of the cost of packaged ink cartridges (see graphic below). Printer companies make up their profit on the "back end" of the transaction.
Printer companies have been caught setting up their printers so that they show "out of ink" when they are really not, and now HP has pushed our a software update that causes 3rd party (cheaper) ink cartridges to stop working in many of their products.
This past week, thousands of HP Inc. printer owners were notified by their printers that their ink cartridges were "damaged" and needed to be replaced. The reason, according to a statement from HP, was a firmware update intended to "protect HP's innovations and intellectual property." But some users report that even HP's own cartridges failed in their printers—and that they weren't able to get the printer to respond in order to remove the offending ink.
This is something Lexmark also tried to accomplish several years ago, stating that the microchips present in their brand of ink cartridge could not be copied or emulated by other manufacturers (their argument was thrown out at the time).
|click to enlarge|