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Why Some Printer Inks May Cost More Than Others

2011-08-05

Even though a lot of printers seem similar, the ink costs vary, sometimes greatly. Many people wonder why ink costs are higher in some cases, and there are a few reasons for this. One of the reasons is simple economics. Because ink cartridges in most cases are not reused, there is a high demand for printer ink. When there is high demand for something, business economics tells us that companies can and do charge more for these needed supplies.

For certain brands that are in higher demand than others, the cost is higher. In fact, in some cases where a company has a virtual corner on the market for proprietary inks, they charge considerably more due to lack of competition.

People joke that printer ink is the most expensive liquid someone can buy - there are numerous comparisons between printer ink and other expensive liquids. For example, printer ink is seven times more expensive than posh champagne brand Dom Perignon.

Continuing along the economic vein, you may have noticed that printers, even the deluxe all-in-one kinds, have gone down in price in recent years, becoming much more affordable. There is a reason for this, and it is not just because as technology advances, components become cheaper, although this is partly true.

But wait, there's more. Printer manufacturers actually are selling their printers at a loss, meaning that it costs more to fabricate them than they are sold for. They do this because they know that people will have to buy ink cartridges, and this is where they make their money.

They charge a high price so that the consumer's ink costs are high, but they need the ink for their printers to work. It is worth it for them to take the hit on printer costs because they know they will make it up on ink revenues.

This also explains why there are cheaper brands of ink cartridges. Companies have come in to provide off-brand ink cartridges, which cost much less than the name brands. Because these companies are not the companies that make the printers, they are able to charge less because printer ink is all they produce and they do not have to make up the losses from printer sales.

However, name brand printer and ink companies have tried to find ways around this, so that consumers will purchase their inks. Some have even gone so far as to install a smart chip in their ink cartridges so that the printers will not work without them, forcing people to have to use their brand.

It is important to research the different brands of printer ink when making a decision of which one to buy for your printer.

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