Technology is rapidly advancing, and office printers are changing with it. 

The latest advancements in office printing can transform the way your business prints, bringing benefits spanning:

  • Efficiency to your workforce;
  • Capacity to print, scan, and copy more documents;
  • Enhanced image quality;
  • Cost-savings on paper, energy, and ink usage;
  • Better printer security.

To bring you up-to-speed, we’re exploring the latest technology and tools for office printing and how your business can benefit.

1. AI printing technology

Artificial intelligence is catching up with the printing world, reducing hands-on involvement, and giving you more time to focus on your job’s critical tasks.

There are many types of AI printing technology that are assisting IT professionals and office managers, including:

  • AI optimization – analyzing documents to decide the best layout for minimizing print waste. 
  • AI routing – routing print jobs to the nearest available printer in the office to enhance efficiency. 
  • AI monitoring – real-time adjustments of printer components and settings to improve quality. 
  • AI maintenance – monitoring printer components and suggesting routine maintenance to avoid downtime. 

Over time, AI printer technology learns more about your print use and requirements, generating ongoing benefits and improvements. 

2. 3D printing advancements

The advancements in 3D printing keep getting bigger. 3D printers allow you to print a three-dimensional solid object from a digital file.

Aside from being a great party trick, 3D printing brings cost and efficiency savings to many businesses. For example, you can 3D print a product prototype to test, analyze and improve before sending it to be manufactured. Or, you can 3D print spare product parts to send to customers with faulty products quickly.

The latest advancements in 3D printing make 3D printers more affordable, available, and practical for office use, while reducing the amount of energy used and printing times.

3. Hands-free printing

You’re running out of the office to a meeting, and you need something printed STAT. Or, your area sales manager is in the office and wants to print something but doesn’t have her laptop with her.

There are many office situations where hand-free printing can be a godsend, and the latest print technology is making it a reality.

Three forms of hands-free printing are now widely available to offices:

Cloud printing

Integrations such as HP and Google Cloud Print mean you can print documents over the web to any printer – regardless of where you are. You can also scan documents directly to the cloud, reducing your server requirements while enhancing access, discoverability, and shareability of documents and information.

Trending article: Implementing cloud print services: the new technology in print

Mobile printing

Mobile apps such as the Canon Print app allow you to print, copy, and scan documents directly from your mobile phone or tablet.

Voice-activated printing

Printer brands such as Epson have developed technology that enables users to instruct Alexa, Google, or Siri to print documents for them. You can even tailor the settings to ensure they only respond to specific voices.

4. Environmentally friendly advancements

The environmental impact of printing can be significant. Aside from the paper you’re using, there’s also energy consumption, water usage, and waste. However, printer brands are working hard on technology that makes office printing more sustainable.

Recent advancements include:

  • Canon’s Radiant Fusing technology results in virtually no warm-up time, less energy consumption, quicker printing, and less noise and ozone pollution.
  • Epson’s Heat-Free technology uses less power and places less pressure on printer components, reducing the need for replacement parts.
  • HP’s web-based Carbon Footprint Calculator calculates your energy use, paper use, and CO2 emissions so you can reduce and offset your usage.
  • Remote monitoring by a managed print service analyzes your printing to reduce paper consumption, consumable waste, energy use, and inefficiencies.

Recommended article: How to increase your company’s green credentials

5. Printer security technology

The rise in wireless, cloud, mobile, and voice-activated printing brings an increased risk of cybercrime. In fact, the more complex and advance your office printer, the more vulnerable it is.

However, advancements in network security, user-access management, and software security management enable you to better protect your office printers and the information running through them.

Even better, the ability for an MPS (managed print service) to access, control, and monitor your printer network remotely, means you can hand over printer security to the experts.

6. Image optimization improvements

The leading office printer brands are continually trying to improve the output quality of office prints – making them clearer, vibrant, and more accurate.

Several solutions have recently entered the market to help, including Canon’s Screenpoint. This printer technology inspects each print job element and optimizes printing depending on the image type (text, photo, or illustration). This includes balancing gray scales, adjusting contrast, enhancing shades, and more.

The result? A higher-quality print that you don’t have to spend time optimizing or printing again.

7. Printer workflow optimization

Printer workflow optimization has also become better, more reliable, and more useful.

Technology now enables your business to:

  • Extract data from documents and route it to the correct place
  • Find, share, and access information while complying with security policies
  • Automate document-intensive processes
  • Evaluate printer performance and usage to maximize cost savings and productivity.

A word of warning before investing in the latest office printer technology

We know you want the latest and greatest printer technology for your business. But, before investing in the new printer technology, it’s crucial to:

  • Conduct a cost-benefit analysis to ensure the benefits of the new technology outweigh the costs.
  • Read reviews on the technology you want to invest in to see how it works for other businesses.
  • Work with an MPS to help you optimize your existing printing process and advise on the best printer technology for your goals.

Conclusion

The printer market is finally catching up with the rest of the tech industry, bringing some much-needed innovation with it.

And, the best is yet to come. Keep an eye on our blog for the latest printing technology and releases relevant to your office.