Staples is shining a spotlight on HP's revamped ink-replacement service that promises free printing "for life."
HP's Instant Ink service works in tandem with Wi-Fi enabled HP Deskjet, ENVY and OfficeJet printers to notify the manufacturer when ink is running low and trigger deliveries of new ink cartridges to subscribers. Instant Ink subscription plans are based on the number of pages printed per month and now include a “free” plan that allows participants to print 15 pages a month for free (and $1 per 10 pages once the monthly maxiumum is exceeded). The other plans range in price from $2.99 to $9.99 a month, allowing shoppers to print 50-300 pages (depending on the plan).
"The 'free printing plan' is new and a great option for customers who print low-volume per month, but still want a hassle-free printing plan," an HP spokesperson told the Institute.
Shoppers could enroll in the free subscription plan beginning Oct. 3 via instantink.com and at Staples stores starting on Oct. 13. In stores, standees and endcap displays tout the free plan under a "print free for life" message. An e-commerce page on staples.com also highlights the program with a video (see below) and touts eligible printers. A display ad within staples.com and a feature in the retailer's Dec. 10 circular supported.
Retailers including Best Buy and Office Depot also promote HP Instant Ink on their websites, though the latter has not updated its page to reflect the addition of the free option.