Another year has come and gone and unfortunately, so have the wonderful summer holidays. We know, we feel your pain! Going back to school and work and back into routine can be tough, especially after weeks of doing nothing but eating, relaxing and being merry. While you’re probably wondering whether the kids need new school shoes or you need a new tie for the office, there’s one thing you may have overlooked that will actually make getting back into the swing of things that much easier. Any guesses? Of course, we’re talking about your home printer. Think back: when was the last time you updated your printer? Chances are it’s been a while. The good news? The modern printer is more powerful than ever before – and there is a printer to suit every household’s needs and budget.
A printer is an essential piece of technology for every organised and efficiently-run household. From printing school and work documents, to keeping a record of bills and receipts, to proof-reading contracts in hard-copy and storing digital copies of important documents. Whether your printer is for student needs, personal printing or because you run a business from home, it’s vital you find the right printer for your requirements. The thing is, choosing the right printer can be quite overwhelming and confusing. The purpose of this article is to help make the process simpler, so you can feel confident that your next printer purchase is the right one.
Know what your printer be used for
Is the printer primarily for your home business? Is it for printing school projects and reports? Does it need to be able to print in colour or will black and white do? What features do you need: scanning, copying, faxing, Wi-Fi capability? These are just a few things to think about when choosing the optimal printer for your needs.
Another important thing to consider is the printing speed and colour quality. If you think you’ll be printing a lot of photographs (family or otherwise) or important presentations that need to look professional, you’ll want a high-quality colour printer. Furthermore, if you’ll be printing lengthy contracts or documents, you’ll want a printer with fast printing speeds so you don’t waste your time waiting for your items to print.
Decide if you need a single-function or multi-function device
If you only need a home printer for printing purposes, a single-function printer would be the best option for you. It’s both simple to use and extremely cost-effective. However, perhaps you need a multi-function printer that has photocopying, scanning, printing and emailing capabilities? A multi-function device is very convenient because it combines the processes and capabilities of multiple devices into one – so it is both cost-effective and space-saving!
Understand the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)
When choosing the right printer for your needs and budget, the lower purchase price doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the most cost-effective solution. It’s important to look beyond the buying price, for example, how much will you be paying in consumables. A good analogy is buying a car. Sure, there’s the initial outlay, but what about petrol, servicing and maintenance? When buying a printer, it’s not just the buying price you need to think about. You also need to consider toner, paper and servicing. While it might seem like you’ve bought an inexpensive printer, the actual price you want to look at is the total cost of ownership (TCO), which offers the best value in the long-run.
Consumables (like toners and cartridges) need to be replaced every so often. When looking at different printers and devices, make sure you ask about the type and the cost of consumables required. Also, look for a printer with an Energy Star Rating. Not only will this save your money and reduce energy, it’ll help keep the environment greener. By taking the time to understand the TCO of a new printer or device, you can save yourself a lot of unnecessary financial or productivity loss.
Make sure the printer has Wi-Fi capabilities
These days, almost everything is done online and wirelessly. Goodbye pesky and unsightly long cables and plugs trailing through the house or home office. Most printers can print directly via a Wi-Fi network from a mobile device, so you don’t even need a PC to print. Before purchasing a printer, ask about its mobile and Wi-Fi connectivity, especially if your family uses a lot of devices. For example, Apple devices use AirPrint and Android devices use Google Cloud Print, so you’ll want to make sure your printer is compatible with either of these. Some printers even have their own mobile app available to download too.
Get clear on how easy it is to use
Let’s be honest, IT struggles are never fun and there are so many times you can turn it on and off again before you realise you’re doing something wrong. That’s why ease of use should be high on your list of priorities when purchasing a new printer. Make sure to consider things like: how easy is the printer to install? How simple is it to use? If you have any concerns, you can always ask the supplier. It’s also a good idea to ask if the supplier has any customer support services like a phone number, online support or even video tutorials. No matter what, if you have a problem, you want a supplier who you will be able to contact easily and swiftly.
Find out more by calling us at FXBC Fuji Xerox Business Centre on (02) 66526844