HP & Conde Nast Have An Idea: Print Your Own Magazines

Wired -- All Access

Wired -- All Access

The iPad and other tablets have changed the way we read magazines. HP once hoped to be part of that approach, too, but its short-lived TouchPad proved that it takes more than being the largest PC vendor around to compete.

But the Palo Alto-based company isn’t ready to give up. If being technologically advanced isn’t the way to go, maybe it should try going backward.

Last week, HP announced a partnership with Condé Nast to change the way we read magazines, taking a different approach from most tablet makers. How? Print your own magazines, using original HP ink cartridges.

With the new service, readers can schedule their favorite magazines from Condé Nast — such as Allure, Details, Epicurious, Glamour, Golf Digest, Self, and Wired — to be delivered directly to their printers. HP Senior Vice President Stephen Nigro, says the scheduled delivery service “allows customers to get the content they want, whenever they want it.” Nigro runs the company’s Inkjet and Web Solutions, Imaging and Printing Group

But there’s more to it. As you can imagine, printing a full colored magazine would suck your ink cartridges dry (and thus your wallet), but HP has has a solution. With the “HP Instant Ink pilot program,” you can get HP cartridges for $5.99 to $10.99 per month, depending on the product line.

Shipping will be free, and HP claims that “users may receive up to 50 percent annual savings on ink cartridge purchases for one low monthly fee.”

The reception of this service will largely depend on the willingness of readers to pay more for sub-par magazine quality, some stapling or binding fun, and pollute the environment further by using more papers and having trucks delivering ink cartridges around the neighborhood. I’ll pass.

Photo credit: Antti Vilpponen

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