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Dell overhauls print portfolio for digital era

13 Nov 2012
Dell c1765nf multi-function printer

Dell has refreshed its printer portfolio with nine new models targeting both small and medium businesses (SMBs) and large enterprises.

The new models cover mono and colour lasers and multi-function printers (MFPs), the latter designed around a new approach to make printing part of an overarching digital document strategy.

According to Dell, printing is evolving, and so it has developed its new range of products based on customer feedback. New features include a four-step easy setup for wireless printers, while its expanded Mobile Print app now covers Apple devices to better support customer requirements.

"Printing is moving away from being the box in the corner, and more and more of our printers will have solutions embedded in them, going forwards," said Dave McNally, Dell's EMEA imaging product marketing director.

McNally added that the printer should be seen as the "on and off ramp" for documents in the corporate network, with the ability to digitise, manage, and then print documents at the point of need.

For SMBs and home offices, the C1765nf (pictured above) and C1765nfw colour MFPs are entry-level devices that offer "functions that would previously only be available on a high-end copier" according to McNally, thanks to the bundling of Nuance's PaperPort document management software.

The £259 C1765nfw is Ethernet and wireless-capable, while the £239 C1765nf only supports Ethernet and cannot be upgraded.

Also aimed at SMB users are the C1660w and C1760nw, which cost just £139 and £169, respectively, offering high-quality colour prints with low maintenance, according to Dell.

For medium to large enterprises, the £999 B3465dnf and £1,699 B5465dnf are mono MFPs designed for a low cost per page at high print volumes.

These feature separate toner and drum components to cut waste, use toner with a lower melting point for greater energy efficiency, and can hibernate and wake up in an instant, according to Dell.

Also aimed at larger customers, the £619 B5460dn, £489 B3460dn and B2360d/dn, priced at £159 and £199, respectively, are also aimed at lowering cost of ownership by reducing the cost per page.

This is achieved through separate toner and drum again, but McNally said that Dell has implemented technology that calculates how many pages can be printed with the remaining toner, to avoid waste.

"Typically, print quality degrades as toner runs out. Our technology ensures that you don't get that greying out, but see crisp prints right until the end," he explained.

For Dell's new wireless printers, the firm has implemented a four-click setup process to get connected via Wi-Fi, which means there is "no need for an IT professional to do it for you," according to McNally.

Dell also released a Mobile Print for Android devices earlier this year, and said it intends to extend this with a version for Apple iOS devices in January.

All of the printers also support Microsoft's newly released Windows 8 and Windows RT platforms, Dell said, and are available immediately, with the exception of the B5465dnf which will ship in January.

Pricing includes a one-year next-business-day exchange service with remote diagnosis, Dell said.

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Daniel Robinson

Daniel Robinson is technology editor at V3, and has been working as a technology journalist for over two decades. Dan has served on a number of publications including PC Direct and enterprise news publication IT Week. Areas of coverage include desktops, laptops, smartphones, enterprise mobility, storage, networks, servers, microprocessors, virtualisation and cloud computing.

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