The IBM Super Printer

Just how much do you think it costs?

Ok, since its Friday, here’s a fun one. ”How much do you think it is possible to spend on a printer?” £10,000… £20,000…. £50,000? You obviously haven’t spoken with IBM.

That’s right, the global giant responsible for most of the world’s Super Computers has unveiled a “Super Printer”. Called the Infoprint 4100 (which, to be frank, is a bit of a let down. It should be Mighty Printer, PrintMaster, or Printerator) its prices start at around the £250,000 mark and can spiral to upwards of a million!

So what on earth do you get for such a monstrous outlay? Well, IBM claims it is 20x faster than the fastest state of the art printers today and that roughly translates to churning out Tolstoy’s War and Peace in less than a minute (we’re talking around 1400 pages). Other crazy statistics IBM regaled us with? How about that it can print the length of a football field in just sixty seconds, or even print documents spanning the height of the Empire State Building in less than four minutes.

Of course, these are all meaningless nonsense really. How much text coverage is on each page? Are the documents piled horizontally or tiled vertically? How big is the font? But it does prove one thing: If you can think of it in IT, someone’s probably built/or building it.

Oh, and for the record, the print units alone for a 4100 can cost upwards of quarter of a million quid. Best be rather careful you don’t hit that print button by accident…


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