HP Starts HP World Conference With Sub-$1,000 Color Laser, Other Peripherals

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Hewlett-Packard, which this week is holding its HP World conference here, set the tone for the event with a number of product introductions on Monday.

Leading the new product releases is the company's first sub-$1,000 color laser printer, the LaserJet 2500. It features 600 x 600-dpi native resolution or 2,400 dpi using HP ImageREt. Print speed is 4 ppm color or 16 ppm in black/white.

The LaserJet 2500, with an estimated street price of $999, is a four-pass laser printer, meaning each color is printed separately. HP's previous entry color printer, the single-pass LaserJet 4600, was introduced in June with a price of about $1,999.

A single door on the LaserJet 2500 pops open automatically any time one of five different types of consumables needs to be changed. They can all be changed via that door. A connectivity option allows connection to wireless networks or Bluetooth.

The printer is expected to ship in October, company executives said.

Also new from HP is the portable Deskjet 450 printer, a 4,800-dpi inkjet printer with six-color printing. Key features are a lithium-ion battery and connectivity options including parallel, USB, fast infrared and Bluetooth. An airline and car power adapter and a carrying case are optional. The Deskjet 450 printer is expected to be available in October for an estimated street price of $299.

For small workgroups, HP introduced the Business Inkjet 3000 inkjet printer, with speeds of up to 8 ppm. It is expected to be available in December for an estimated street price of $799.

HP also introduced a mobile workstation, the Compaq Evo Mobile Workstation N800w. The model includes a 15-inch LCD panel and ATI's Mobility Fire GL 9000 graphics technology. Based on the mobile Pentium 4 Processor-M at up to 2.2GHz, it can accommodate a second battery for a battery life of more than seven hours, company executives said. It has been certified with applications in the digital content creating, CAD and geographic markets. The N800w is expected to be available next week starting at $3,899.

The company also introduced a number of digital media products, including two one-touch scanners. Images of up to 2,400 dpi with up to 48-bit color can be scanned directly to the Web or to a PC. The $299 Scanjet 5500c includes an automatic photo feeder. The feeder is an option on the $199 Scanjet 4570c.

Also new are a $249 printer aimed at printing borderless 4 x 6-inch prints, as well as a new $499 digital camera with 4.1-megapixel resolution and up to 56X zoom.

The scanners, photo printer and digital camera are expected to be available next month.

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