Use a Tablet, Save a Tree

Published on February 16, 2011
by John Paczkowski

Ironic, isn’t it, that Hewlett-Packard touts wireless printing as one of the TouchPad’s big selling points, when the tablet form-factor to some extent obviates the need to print.

By providing us with an easy, intuitive way of viewing and editing documents, tablets are reducing printing demand in the consumer and enterprise markets. And by increasing demand for e-books and digital magazines and newspapers, they’re doing the same thing in the commercial printing market as well. In fact, Morgan Stanley expects a decline of up to two percent in printer supplies revenue in 2011 and a two percent to five percent decline in 2012.

“CIOs in the enterprise space already expect to cut spending on printer supplies in 2011,” the research outfit said in a vast new report on the tablet market. “As the installed base of tablets–a digital document viewer that reduces the need to print both standard black and white documents and expensive color presentations–grows, we expect printed page volumes to shrink. What?’s more, 90% of iPad users already believe they would print less with access to work documents on their tablets.”

Given that, it’s no wonder HP is putting so much effort into the TouchPad. If tablets are reducing printing demand across all market strata, its printing business is clearly going to take a hit. What better way to ease that blow than to sell a tablet of its own?

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