Brother Unveils 7 New Printers For Mid-Market

Brother International significantly boosted its presence in the mid-market space Wednesday with the release of its first line of printers aimed at mid-market companies.

The new line, which includes seven printers within its L5000 and L6000 series, focuses on solving office workflow needs with a group of smaller products that create a "pod" of printers working together, replacing the traditional A3 office copier.

"You don’t need to have big, centralized copiers handling all the workload" said Steve Feldstein, Brother’s product marketing director of scanners and business products.

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Feldstein said that many midsize companies are underutilizing the A3 copiers they currently use because many functions of the large all-in-one office machine - like stapling and binding - are no longer needed in most business operations.

According to a study conducted by InfoTrends, many mid-sized businesses have high-end multi-function printers with advanced capabilities that they’re not taking advantage of, and although the machines they own are capable of printing 100,000 pages, on average, they only print no more than 10,000.

Feldstein said many offices buy fewer, more expensive A3s and place them in areas where workers must walk farther to get to them.

InfoTrends reported that a business with 500 employees printing five jobs on an A3 machine in a week can lose, on average, 4,333 hours a year in productivity to one-minute walks to and from the printer, costing the company, on average, nearly $130,000 a year.

"A lot of our competitors have those A3 models" Feldstein said, "and they don’t want to move away from that business model."

However, Brother is moving forward without those legacy machines in an attempt to redefine office printing.

A "pod" approach, Feldstein said, looks at which printers a specific business unit needs and matches that need with the right product. He calls that "right-sizing" the environment instead of selling a product that has features its users won’t utilize.

"Business are beginning to truly understand they might not need that printer that is totally underutilized." he said.

Brother's new line includes seven new printers, six All-in-Ones and three multi-function copiers, all of which are available from authorized resellers, including its channel partners and distributors. However, some models won’t be available until the end of the month.

The new models fill out the largest product portfolio Brother has ever had: 15 models that are on sale through all distribution partners.

The new releases include all features Brother has been adding to its products over the last year, including NFC credit card security, as well as cloud and mobile applications, which allow the printers to scan documents directly to devices or cloud apps such as Dropbox and Box.

The new products also have faster print, copying and scanning speeds than previous Brother models, with the top-of-the-line printers churning out 48 pages per minute, or 50 monochrome pages, and two-sided monochrome handling 100 pages per minute.

Each product also comes integrated with network capability and are compatible with Amazon's new Dash Replenishment program, which users can sign up for through Amazon, Dash will automatically monitor and purchase toner and ink for printers, eliminating the need for a lengthy ordering process.