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A New Kind of Hybrid IT: Inkjet and Laser Printers Coexisting

Office printers are not likely to be the first things that you think of when you hear the term ‘hybrid’ in an IT context. But like other hybrid solutions, the blending of centralized, color multi-function devices (MFDs) and business-class inkjet printers allows for the best of both worlds that cover all needs of the efficient, modern office.

The Aha! Moment
The reasons why this hybrid pairing makes sense may easily be overlooked, but once you (and your customers) consider them, you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of them sooner.

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While many IT departments believe they can put to rest their costly printing concerns with centralized printing, there can be a number of shortcomings to this approach.

  • -Productivity Loss—Knowledge workers must abandon the tasks at hand to retrieve their documents from a centralized printer location. This interruption may seem trivial, but, consider that it takes more than 23 minutes for workers to return to tasks after interruptions.1 Multiplied over every employee, every time they need to print, this can easily add up to significant costs and production inefficiencies.
  • -Impact Loss—To combat the frustration of commuting to the shared printer or waiting for their print job, many workers send their print jobs to local, monochrome printers. No big deal for a Word doc, but for marketing and sales people who need impactful presentations, brochures, and creative examples, this is sub-optimal.
  • -Compromised Security & Control—It’s easy for someone to pick up the wrong document—accidentally or purposefully. Print jobs that are not picked up at all leave potentially sensitive financial, medical or proprietary information completely unprotected and uncontrolled.

A Place for Business Inkjets
With hidden inefficiencies of workers needing to leave their desk or workgroup to retrieve printer documents, known departmental needs to print high-quality documents in color, and security concerns within the office environment, it can make sense for customers to take an augmented approach to their printing environment by including inkjet workgroup printers into their centralized fleet. A new generation of business-class inkjet printers has emerged with IT tools, security features, and cost efficiency that makes inkjet technology a viable complement to centralized printers or copiers in office settings.

According to IDC2 as of 2016, inkjet office unit shipments were at 48% vs. laser, and, it’s estimated that inkjet will comprise 60% of office unit shipments by 2021.2 The projected growth of business inkjet will come from workgroup applications where inkjet augments existing printer fleets, allowing IT managers to deploy overall solutions that better meet the performance, cost and flexibility needs of the office.

It’s clear that there is a very viable, new kind of hybrid IT available for your customers that is gaining versus laser in all markets. Learn more about this solutions-enabled technology and new business models with Epson at

1 Worker, Interrupted: The Cost of Task Switching. Kermit Pattison, University of California, Irvine. Fast Company, July 28, 2008
2 Source IDC, 2017 (Based on extrapolation from IDC Inkjet Forecast data, includes SOHO and SMB Market) — Consumer
Unit Shipments: IDC Worldwide Single-Function Printer Forecast, 2017-2021, IDC Worldwide Multifunction Peripheral
Forecast, 2017-2021; Wide-Format Unit Shipments: IDC North America Large-Format Printer Market Shares, 2017-2021;
Production Print Volume: IDC U.S. Production Page Volume Forecast 2017-2021; Office Unit Shipments: IDC Worldwide
Single-Function Printer Forecast, 2017-2021, IDC Worldwide Multifunction Peripheral Forecast, 2017-2021

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