Epson’s bold ambitions to disrupt the office printing market.
Epson has reinforced its sustainability commitments in the print industry, setting out bold ambitions to disrupt the traditional office printing market with a new range of office inkjet MFPs. Based on its Heat-Free inkjet technology, Epson’s new WorkForce Enterprise MFPs offer improved performance, reliability and energy efficiency. They also provide Epson with a complete office print portfolio from small workgroup to large departmental devices.
Withdrawing from the laser market
A year after announcing its ¥100 billion investment into sustainable innovation, Epson has announced it will end the global sale and distribution of laser printers by 2026, citing the greater potential of inkjet to make meaningful advances in sustainability.
Laser and inkjet print technology work very differently. Laser requires heat to fuse toner to a page and uses more consumable parts than inkjet technology.
Epson is now fully committed to its Heat-Free inkjet technology that uses no heat in the ink ejection process and so delivers lower power consumption than laser printing which requires heat to fuse toner to a page and uses more consumable parts.
Inkjet acceptance in the office
Today, the office printing space is dominated by laser-based MFP devices. However, the sustainability benefits and improved performance and print quality of inkjet is helping it gain more acceptance in the office.
Quocirca’s Future of Work 2025 study showed that 25% of organisations across the US and Europe have already adopted inkjet printing, rising to 32% among mid market organisations (500-999 employees). Overall, a further 32% plan to adopt inkjet printing by 2025.
One factor that will help drive acceptance of inkjet technology in the office is the increased priority that organisations are placing on procuring sustainable technology.
When it comes to printing, Quocirca’s Sustainability Trends study showed that 53% of organisations have already deployed energy efficient IT equipment with a further 30% planning to do so in the next 12 months. Further, 89% of IT decision makers said it was very or extremely important that print suppliers provide sustainable products and services.
Epson’s WorkForce Enterprise range
The benefits of reduced waste, minimal intervention, affordability and low energy consumption have already helped Epson gain traction in the office printing space.
Building on this success, Epson is now targeting the color MFP market. While this is a contracting market, Epson views it as a significant opportunity. Organisations are replacing existing technology, particularly as a result of print infrastructure modernisation to support the hybrid and distributed workplace.
Epson’s new WorkForce Enterprise AM-Series offers speeds of 40-60 ppm, extending Epson’s business inkjet portfolio. This enables it to deliver a full range of products, from small workgroup MFPs through to high-speed departmental devices.
The range offers some notable technical innovations that improve reliability and performance while reducing service interventions. These include a shorter paper path to avoid paper jams, a new hydraulic ink system that optimises ink usage, and high yield ink cartridges. This reduces material usage, shipping, storage and end of use consumables management, as well as reducing downtime for routine maintenance.
With the new range, Epson has also overcome the issues often associated with inkjet – such as ink drying out – with a new moisturising liquid tank and intelligent ink flushing.
From a security perspective, the new range supports access control, document protection, data protection and device protection. The latter includes firmware signature verification, secure boot and malware runtime intrusion detection.
Enhanced solutions platform
Epson has also expanded its solutions support. This encompasses both Epson proprietary solutions and third party solutions, including PaperCut, MyQ and Y Soft. Its new version of Epson Print Admin offers new advanced workflow integration to support document capture, and embedded OCR functionality that supports the creation of searchable PDF files across 29 languages. In Conclusion
Epson is well positioned to level the playing field in the office printing market with the launch of its new Enterprise WorkForce product range.
In addition to the environmental benefits of its Heat-Free technology, the improved performance and reliability, robust security features, and enhanced document workflow integration make this product range a good fit for organisations looking to refresh and modernise their printer fleet with sustainability in mind.
For Epson, this range will also help it address a much broader market which has in the past been limited to distributed or smaller workgroup environments where inkjets may be deployed in branch or satellite offices. It now has the portfolio to extend its customer footprint into centralised office and HW locations.