HP Inc. Unleashes Next Generation A3 MFPs to Disrupt $55B Copier Market

Barbara Richards and Marlene Orr
Sep 28, 2016

On September 12th in conjunction with HP Inc.’s announced acquisition of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.’s Printer Business the company also announced an extensive line of A3 Laser and PageWide MFPs and services aimed at disrupting the $55B copier market. According to HP,  As part of its strategy to reinvent business printing these new products enable their partners to sell and service more cost effectively while delivering customers affordable color, reliable performance and industry-leading security.

The new portfolios of MFPs include three PageWide and 13 LaserJet platforms available in 54 different sku numbers with a variety of finishing options, including an in-cave stapler stacker, hole-punch and high capacity staple/booklet maker.

Figure 1: New HP A3 MFP Portfolio

NewHPProductLineup

HP PageWide Enterprise and Pro

According to HP, the new PageWide Enterprise and Pro series will offer best in class print speeds and lower energy consumptions than similar priced lasers in their class such as:

  • A 55% reduction in carbon footprint of printing
  • Utilize 73% less energy usage than laser printers
  • Generate up to 95% less supplies and packaging waste than comparable lasers

The new HP PageWide products are designed for A3 output and will range in print speeds from 40ppm up to 60ppm. Some of the new features include correct order face down output, easy to replace supplies and built in servicing and diagnostic system as well as the new finishing accessories listed above. Product availability for the PageWide Pro is scheduled for spring 2017 while the HP PageWide Enteprise devices will be available fall 2017.

Figure 2: New HP PageWide A3 MFP

HPPageWideA3MFPpic

HP LaserJet A3 MFPs

The new LaserJet A3 MFPs will be available in both color and monochrome with printing speeds ranging from 25ppm to 60ppm. In addition, HP states the new LaserJet’s will have some of the longest life components and fastest repair times among A3 laser devices in the industry, thanks to fewer parts and field replaceable units (single components that allow for a quick change at a customer site, rather than replacing multiple individual parts, as is the norm for traditional A3 models). Availability is scheduled for fall 2017.

Figure 3: New HP LaserJet A3 MFP 

HPLJA3MFPic

Smart Devices & Security

In addition to the A3 MFP announcements, HP also highlighted their Smart Device Services; a set of cloud tools and device-based sensing capabilities designed to integrate with third party device monitoring and service management tools. The Smart Devices Services (SDS) are compatible with any HP printer and MFPs which include FutureSmart firmware introduced in 2012 and later. HP believes SDS will enhance service efficiency for their partners’ fleet and improve up-times by providing predictive service alerts to dealers, allowing them to know the current issue, as well as those that may arise soon, before deploying service personnel, thus reducing the incidence of repeat visits. The new services will be available to qualified HP channel partners as no additional cost for all contractual devices using HP original supplies.

While security has long been a component of MPS, most vendors and partners have focused their energy on highlighting value propositions around cost savings and workflow efficiencies. HP appears intent on going beyond these more traditional value propositions, and really focusing on the value of enterprise print security. According to HP, security is a key consideration in the engineering of their new HP A3 MFPs.  Both the PageWide and LaserJet Enterprise devices will feature HP’s embedded security features, SureStart,Run-time Intrusion Detection and Whitelisting.  In addition the PageWide Pro devices will also feature secure boot and firmware integrity checking.

Channel Strategy

One of the biggest changes with this announcement is how these new A3 MFPs will be sold. As part of their broader strategy outlined at their recent global partner conference, HP has introduced a new program for qualified partners which includes guaranteed pricing, sales tools and service support. In addition, HP financial Services (HPFS) will provide a variety of investment options to help their customers. Furthermore, HP’s recent acquisition of Samsung’s Printing Business will further broaden their channel presence within the traditional office equipment dealer channel. By providing lower service costs/more efficient service visits, HP will provide partners the ability to either pass the savings on to the customer or keep a competitive cpp and increase their profits.  The A3 models distribution will be protected, since partners will have to be qualified to sell them.

InfoTrends’ Opinion

While HP is no stranger to the A3 market and has tried to break into the channel previously with low success rates, the HP team has done their homework this time around. Key executives have spent the time to learn how channel partners run their businesses, put in place a brand new support infrastructure and will offer incentives to help qualified partners maximize profitability. If HP can successfully implement this plan, it could really shake up industry, acting as one of the greatest changes in the copier market since the introduction of the 4345 ten years ago. And combined with the acquisition of the Samsung print portfolio, this means that HP is poised to offer partners and customers a complete end-to-end solution, from low-end printers all the way up to A3 MFPs. While integration will take some time, I think it’s safe to say that this will strengthen the HP brand and portfolio by giving them the power to manufacture the engine technology. It remains to be seen how the Canon relationship will be affected, but this will definitely change the game if HP can get the messaging right and convince partners to sell the A3 products. HP has always been a leader in providing cutting edge technology, but cracking into the copier market has always been the difficulty. Maybe this time they’ll get it right.

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