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HP Instant Ink service announced, an end to ink cartridge blues

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HP Instant Ink
HP Instant Ink

HP has unveiled its new Instant Ink service, which lets you pay a subscription fee to get hold of printer ink instead of having to buy super-expensive ink cartridges.

HP Instant Ink is a pay monthly service that lets you forget about having to buy ink cartridges, which cost £17-25 for a set online.

Instant Ink starts at £1.99 a month, which gets you 50 printed pages per month. You pay for the paper, but the £1.99 pays for the ink, which is delivered to you whenever you run low.

For those who need more, the £3.49 package gets you 100 pages a month and the £7.99 one 300 pages.

You can roll over your pages too, and HP offers top-ups should you need more pages.

You get 15, 20 or 25 additional pages for a pound depending on which deal you’re signed up to. The more expensive plans get you more additional pages for a pound.

HP says Instant Ink is designed for small and medium businesses as well as normal folk, if you’re wondering why someone might want to print 300-plus pages a month.

The best part about Instant Ink is that it doesn’t discriminate between printing a brief page of text or a full page photo. For people wanting to print out photos regularly, it could end up being a bargain.

All the printers compatible with the Instant Ink service are Wi-Fi-connected, and once your ink cartridge reaches a certain level, you’ll automatically be sent a new cartridge.

Supported printers at launch include the HP Envy 4500, HP Envy 5530, HP Envy 4630 HP and the Officejet Pro 8610 and 8620.

How doed HP Instant Ink work?
To avoid too many deliveries, HP Instant Ink uses huge cartridges with much greater ink reserves than standard ones. HP couldn’t tell us the exact capacity, but it calls them “XXL” cartridges.

Another benefit is that there’s no 12-month contract – you can leave Instant Ink whenever you like. However, the cartridges are clever enough to know whether you’re signed up or not and you won’t be able to print using an Instant Ink cartridge once your membership term has expired.

Once used up, you can send off the Instant Ink cartridges for recycling using a pre-paid envelope that comes as part of the delivery, and HP says it has recycled more than 700,000 tonnes of cartridges to date.

HP Instant Ink will be available from high street locations including PC World, but you can also sign up through the Instant Ink website.

Next, read our best printers round-up


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