Printers do something exciting, yippee!!
Printers don’t tend to be very interesting. Thanks then to HP, because these two are…
The Deskjet 6980 (above) and 6940 achieve this difficult task because of one simple, long overdue and highly useful feature: integrated wireless. We’re talking the full shebang too: 802.11b/g with inbuilt security and an automated software setup.
Printers, like digital cameras, have been crying out to go wireless for eons now. Networking a device has been a get around so far, but it certainly doesn’t offer the freedom that true WiFi brings. In fact, with the imminent arrival of WUSB it seemed like true wireless would be skipped altogether in favour of this alternative connectivity but I’m glad to see at least one manufacturer is not passing off this responsibility.
Neither model looks short in its core competency areas either with optimised print resolutions of 4800 dpi prints, 36ppm and 27ppm respectively and the ability to print to non-standard paper sizes including 610 x 215 panorama shots. Optional paper trays can be purchased to hold up to 250 sheets at a time and naturally PictBridge is not overlooked just because of their more glamorous addition. Even more encouraging is that both the 6980 and 6940 don’t cost the earth at £129 and £99 each and they hit shelves in March.
Hopefully this move will press other manufacturers in making the same moves. After all, there is absolutely no reason why a device as basic as a printer should have to be tethered to your computer(s) anymore…