back to article HP TV ads claim its printers are 'made to be less hated'

What's this? A tacit admission from Hewlett Packard that customers hate printer products? If vegging in front of the idiot box is something you do to decompress after an afternoon spent fantasizing about going "Office Space" on your workplace's HP facilities, we suppose you might have caught a rare telly spot commissioned by …

  1. wiggers

    HP Support

    I'm in the middle of a marathon session with HP support (~8hrs total so far) trying to get A5 printing of an image working. Wasted 2hrs because the support droid didn't know what a self-extracting archive was nor what an inf file was for!

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: HP Support

      Ah, kids these days . . .

    2. Lord Elpuss Silver badge

      Re: HP Support

      Seems unlikely.

  2. Greg 38

    Missed the target

    As usual, HP has missed that the real reason people hate their printers is the forced use of proprietary over priced ink cartridges that the printer won't recognize after being refilled.

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: Missed the target

      That's the leading reason, well ahead of the pack where network connection issues, jammed paper, an intolerance to cat hair, unnecessary Windows software and dried print heads are competing for second place.

      1. cyberdemon Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Missed the target

        Not to mention the godawful and privacy-invasive HP Cloud Print service

        No, I do not want my Printer to be on the Internet of Things, thanks! What's the point of printing to a printer on the other side of the country / world? It's a printer for goodness sake, it spits out a physical piece of paper that requires physical presence to pick up..

        If you happen to be not near your printer but need to print something for later.. Save the PDF and print over WiFi when you're near enough to pick it up, instead of handing all your private documents to HP!

        & HP have got to be the worst printer manufacturer out there when it comes to crapware, planned-obsolescence and refill-prevention DRM chips

        1. ThatOne Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: Missed the target

          > HP have got to be the worst printer manufacturer out there when it comes to crapware, planned-obsolescence and refill-prevention DRM chips

          ...but the competition is fierce.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Missed the target

            But with blind dedication they still manage to be number one ....

            Crappy build

            Crappy software

            Crappy cartridges and ink

            Crappy longevity

            1. quxinot

              Re: Missed the target

              I wonder what a printer would cost if:

              Ink/toner was cheap.

              Build quality was designed to be good for >10 years. Metal chassis, maybe some plastic bits for making it look pretty.

              Parts diagrams and availability of replacement parts.

              Simple drivers that don't sing and dance--and that would fit on a floppy.

              Figure a grand or two? It'd be probably worth it to buy one, then.

              1. Yorick Hunt Silver badge

                Re: Missed the target

                No need to wonder, just cast your mind back a couple of decades - and yes, people were happy to spend more because they were getting a device which could easily last a decade.

              2. Lord Elpuss Silver badge

                Re: Missed the target

                Trouble is: you'd get one of these mythical beasts then within 6 months the vendor would be looking for additional revenue streams to squeeze out of you.

                As long as Wall Street is driving quarterly numbers, you'll never be able to just buy a product and have it work forever. The machine needs feeding.

              3. Antron Argaiv Silver badge

                Re: Missed the target

                Got my LJ5 for free (some repair required)

                New fuser ($150), new drive gears ($30). Upgraded the memory, JetDirect card, new toner cart, and it's working like new.

                It's built like a tank and stupid simple to work on. Of course, it's almost 25 years old, but it does what I need, parts and toner are cheap (and pre-DRM).

                Of course, it's "Bill and Dave" HP quality, not the current abomination of the same name.

          2. Groo The Wanderer Silver badge

            Re: Missed the target

            Indeed it is. HP's new motto really should be "Yes, we suck horribly. But the other vendors suck worse."

            What is it with Epson and HP and pretty much every vendor's line of multifunction printers refusing to scan a document if it has no ink? Since when do you need ink to _scan_ a document? Threw my Epson out (or in the process; its disconnected and dusty) the piece of junk out. I'm not about to keep it supplied with ink to use it as a scanner, and my Brother laser printer is far cheaper to run, page per page.

            1. ThatOne Silver badge

              Re: Missed the target

              > What is it with Epson and HP and pretty much every vendor's line of multifunction printers refusing to scan a document if it has no ink?

              Just replace "ink" by "subscription", like: "printers refusing to scan a document if you haven't paid your subscription" and everything becomes clear...

    2. An_Old_Dog Silver badge

      Re: Missed the target

      When my HP ink-jet printer/scanner (model F800?) decided not to print because of a black ink cartridge problem, it also decided to deny me use of the scanner.

      *HATE-HATE-HATE-HATE*-->Hewlett-Packard. I never bought another HP printer. I did buy a Brother black-and-white laser printer, with duplexor, which has been nothing but awesome. I also bought a used, standalone, USB-connected scanner. Both work great with my Linux system, and no futzing around was required to make them work.

      1. Anomalous Cowturd
        Holmes

        Re: Missed the target

        Ditto the Brother mono duplex laser, but I have an old HP scanner/printer combo that still scans when it's out of ink. Just as well, because it's never going to see a new cartridge.

        My old LaserJet 4M was still working fine when I gave it away, but it was cheaper to buy the new Brother, than to replace the toner and drum on the HP.

        It's called "Taking the piss."

    3. Wade Burchette

      Re: Missed the target

      In addition to the ink, HP printers also requires personal information to work. No printer -- correction, no product -- should require any personal information to work. New HP laser printers are big bricks without an email address and a constant connection to the internet, even if all you will ever use is a USB cable. I find many all-in-one printers will not scan with the awful HP smart app (more on that) unless you give HP personal information. Even when HP still wisely had standalone drivers, you had to be careful because it tried to snatch too much data from you.

      And speaking of ink, HP printers also will not scan if the printer is out of ink. Why does a scanner require ink?

      As far as the one ad about no more installation fails with the HP smart app ... I think we need to file a lawsuit against HP for that because in my experience, that app makes installing printers harder than ever and has failed more times than the standalone driver.

      Oh, and another thing that makes HP printers so hated is how they replaced easy-to-understand screens with confusing buttons and confusing instructions. HP self-healing Wi-Fi may be a thing, but the hardest thing is to make the printer even connect to Wi-Fi to begin with! What is the point of self-healing Wi-Fi when your product is so difficult to even connect to Wi-Fi? The first HP printer I ever saw with those confusing buttons made the person print the instructions using their own ink and the instructions had obvious spelling errors and was wrong. I had to go the website to get the correct instructions.

      These HP ads conveniently did not address the real reason why HP printers are so hated -- overpriced ink/toner, a gimped product without personal information, a confusing app that makes things more difficult, and confusing buttons instead of an easy-to-understand screen. A pox on HP's house! I always loudly tell everyone I know to avoid HP printers like the plague.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Missed the target

        "No printer -- correction, no product -- should require any personal information to work."

        In fact, if you're in the EU or, pro tem. the UK, GDPR says so.

    4. Danny 14

      Re: Missed the target

      wasnt always this way. we have a 4000n that is awesome. Still has parts, cheap to run, simple drivers and just works Its over 20 years old and still on its original laser and internals. The exit plastics warped in the sun and the 10Mb network card isnt original either (again, sun damage)

    5. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

      Re: Missed the target

      They didn't miss this. The won't mention it for obvious reasons.

  3. mostly average
    Mushroom

    Less hated...

    More loathed.

    Avoid.

  4. Cris E
    Pint

    You know it's bad when...

    It's really bad when you consider they had these in production *before* the unhinged renaming of printers and subsequent glorious push of HP Smrat to the world. They felt so unloved that they tried to make amends to their customers: "I know everyone hates us, so here's a short series of wry commercials and millions of unwelcome infrastructure changes." Mission accomplished, off to the bar!

    1. wiggers

      Re: You know it's bad when...

      The first thing my support droid told me to do was open the dredded HP "Smart" app. It doesn't work on my machine, probably because I've got WARP VPN installed. Then I had to reinstall the drivers using the 320MB "EasyStart" wizard, which was anything but easy. Failed while trying to install a Network Driver, even though it's connected by USB.

      Neither "Easy" nor "Smart".

  5. IGnatius T Foobar !

    H What?

    Glancing over at my Brother printer which cost US$150, uses cheap toner, and doesn't have obnoxious drivers...

    Oh, HP? I remember them. Sad, sad days.

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: H What?

      Glancing over at my Brother printer which cost US$150, uses cheap toner, and doesn't have obnoxious drivers...

      I think if you check your system, you'll find it's an HP now, and you owe them $9,750 for ink.

    2. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

      Re: H What?

      Brother printers are a thing of beauty and a joy forever. Which reminds me, mine's run out of cyan.

      1. mickaroo

        Re: H What?

        We have a Brother MFC-255CW. The last firmware update was issued in 2011.

        It's the "Printer That Won't Die". I think it cannot be killed by conventional means.

        And... it... just... works...

        1. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

          Re: H What?

          I have an HP G55 MFP from about 2004. It's just started giving paper feed issues, mainly because the cork on the rollers has gone shiny.

          But it's been a real work horse for nearly 20 years. I may consider reconditioning the rollers, but it's quite slow by today's standards, and I actually have other printers.

          It is a bit of a shame. The cartridges are huge and print a lot of pages compared to newer printers, and although I can't get HP cartridges for it (at least not at a reasonable price and still in date), re-manufactured ones are still available, although they can be a bit flaky. Also, it's pretty much an old-style HP printer, with no app required to do any setup or maintenance, it can all be done from the buttons and screen on the printer.

          1. vtcodger Silver badge

            Re: H What?

            Back in the 1990s, we used to rub shiny rollers vigorously with a gauze pad soaked in isopropyl alcohol. That often worked. For a few months anyway.

          2. MrDamage Silver badge

            Re: H What?

            Try getting some small, wide rubber bands, put those around the rollers, and make sure they're a tight fit. Worth a shot.

        2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: H What?

          Mick, be very, very careful making statements like that. It might be a Brother but there's still such a thing as tempting fate. Otherwise I'd tell you about my old-school HP laser printer, the one where the hp badge is better engineered than a modern inkjet.

          1. Cris E

            Re: H What?

            We used to run those Laserjet III desktop units as shared print stations way, way, way over their recommended duty cycles. They would literally get grooves worn in the top from pages sliding into the output tray. Amazing machines, once upon a time.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: H What?

      Had my Epson eco-tank for a couple of years and while I don't print a lot I'm still only about 30-40% through the ink that came with the printer whereas with my previous Epson WorkForce I'd need a new ink cartridge at least once a year ... I dread to think what a "consumer" printer would have used!

      Though do nostalgically remember having one of the original DeskJets ~30 years ago which was a revelation in speed and sound compared to the dot-matrix I'd had before!

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: H What?

      "Glancing over at my Brother printer"

      Remember at work a few years ago when we had a new office that our manager requested a printer for us ... and a (admittedly high-spec) Brother InkJet arrived in a box. Manager took severe umbrage at being sent an inkjet and not a laser printer so it never came out of the box. The box remained on display so if anyone visited he could point to it and say "I asked for a printer and look what they sent me"

  6. James O'Shea

    Which is worse?

    HP or Dell?

    Asking for a friend. No, that noise you may hear in the background is NOT an enraged mob sharpening axes and machetes and setting out assorted incendiary materials. Nope, nope, nope.

    1. katrinab Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: Which is worse?

      Pretty sure it would be HP?

      With a Dell, you can do a clean install of your operating system of choice to get rid of all the c**pware.

      Having said that I've never owned a Dell, or an HP printer. I have in the past owned HP desktops, which were OK, my last one was an Ivy Bridge, so I don't know about more recent ones.

      1. BenDwire Silver badge

        Re: Which is worse?

        I have a Dell desktop and a HP printer, and they're both wonderful !!

        Admittedly the Dell got wiped and Debian thrust upon it, and the HP is a Laserjet 6p that just works, albeit with a network print server dongle (PrintSir) I bought 20 years ago.

        I'm planning to move in a couple of years though, and at that point I may well treat myself to a Brother all-in-one and ditch the separate Epson scanner too.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Which is worse?

          "... Laserjet 6p that just works"

          That was built by a different 'HP', many years ago, when HP liked their customers and made well engineered kit that 'just worked' !!!

          HP used to have a laserjet 4/5/6 virtually on each desk .... running for ever ..... then got greedy and started making the laserjets 'less well engineered' & with a built in fail-by date and/or datalink back to the mothership for instructions when to fail. (or so it seemed) !!!

          :)

          1. katrinab Silver badge
            Megaphone

            Re: Which is worse?

            When you sell the printers at a loss and make the money on ink, making the printers fail after a couple of years is actually a dumb idea though.

            1. ThatOne Silver badge

              Re: Which is worse?

              You might think that, but you're most likely a techie and not a marketing critter. For marketing only one thing is important, "create increased shareholder value". So every couple years they will make a new ink tank system which is smaller but more expensive, and to make you buy it they need to stop selling the old, less "profit-efficient" inks.

              1. katrinab Silver badge
                Unhappy

                Re: Which is worse?

                I'm thinking like a bean-counter. You need to sell a certain number of cartridges to make back the money you lost on the hardware, then anything after that is profit. If you only give yourself two years of payback time before you reset the clock, then you are going to get less actual payback.

                1. ThatOne Silver badge
                  Devil

                  Re: Which is worse?

                  > then anything after that is profit

                  Sure, but you know what's better than profit?

                  More profit! *evil laughter*

                  There is no such thing as "too much profit".

  7. Paul Herber Silver badge

    Hated Peripherals, Ink.

    My wife used to have an HP printer. With the amount of ink cartridges she got through it would have been cheaper to have taken a taxi to the local print shop! (Only slight exaggeration)

    1. toejam++

      That's just how most inkjet printers were. I always hated how my Cannon inkjet printer used to prime the color cartridges even when I had monochrome printing selected via the printer drivers. Money down the drain. I eventually took them out unless I was doing a color print. I also took them out because an empty color cartridge would block monochrome print jobs. And you had to keep the cap on those cartridges when removed so they didn't dry out, which was an expensive mistake.

  8. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

    Missed a tagline

    This isn't just a hated printer.

    This is a hated HP printer.

  9. Marty McFly Silver badge
    Pint

    PC Load Letter

    The errors, problems, & the fixes are different now.

    However, the anger & frustration transcend generations of IT workers. Strangely uniting the gray hairs with today's PFYs in a common hatred of HP products.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: PC Load Letter

      Re the subject lines, that is STILL an issue, despite the USA being the only country in the world to still use that local standard paper size. New HP printers, or after replacing a formatter board in an HP laser STILL defaults to that quaint and archaic paper size that literally everyone in the world outside of the USA then has to change to the proper and correct A4 size. :-)

      1. James O'Shea

        Re: PC Load Letter

        Err... nope. Sorry, but I can think of at least a half dozen other countries which still use 'letter' size paper. Mostly in the Caribbean.

        Some countries are Very Resistant To Change. Hint: the Jamaican Post Office, the last time I collected a package from Central Post Office on South Camp Road, near the Army base (there's a reason why it's called 'Camp Road') was still using forms marked British, Colonial, and Overseas Postal Service (I think, it's been 20 years) in 2003, or over 40 years after independence. And these forms were not old forms, left over from the Daze of Olde when Buckra Massa was running things (badly). No, these were new forms recently (that year) printed at the Government Printing Office on Duke Street. They couldn't be bothered to change the damn forms. For 40+ years. The probability of their changing paper sizes approaches zero. (Don't blame the GPO, they just delivered what the Post Office ordered. the Post Office merely failed to change the spec. For 40+ years. And, for all I know, still hasn't.)

  10. alain williams Silver badge

    Advertisments and politicians have one thing in common ...

    you start with the assumption that what they are saying is designed to pull the wool over your eyes.

  11. Missing Semicolon Silver badge

    CD/Bittorrent -> Spotify (no shruggy icon)

    We happily exchanged the freedom of owning (or stealing) our music, with the convenience of streaming.

    So it's actually nice to not have to watch your printer spending your money cleaning itself. HP pays for that, and I get to print. And I have a spare cartridge in the drawer ready, that I didn't have to buy.

    Yes, The Man is extracting £4 a month from me, but it's less stressful than buying my own ink. And since HP got away with only allowing HP ink in their printers now (retrospectively! the bastards!) they can really do what they want.

    1. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

      Re: CD/Bittorrent -> Spotify (no shruggy icon)

      I still buy my music. Hundreds of CDs, loads of albums (haven't counted), loads of singles and over a thousand albums bought at bandcamp ta. On the other hand, no streaming music account. Used to have, but deleted it when I realised I wasn't enjoying it.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: CD/Bittorrent -> Spotify (no shruggy icon)

        I also buy all my music on CD. But my company printer uses HP Ink. We're only a small business - and we used to get through 3 sets of cartridges a year. Not exactly huge. But that was around £100. I've tried various non-HP cartridges and they were mostly not very good. This way we're paying them about £50 a year - and if a cartridge goes wrong they get to pay for it, not me. Also they got a lot of godwill out of me because they fucked up the special offer when we bought this printer and so I got 21 months of free ink, instead of the 3 they were supposed to give us. Oops.

        Also, whisper it, but I've had very little trouble with this printer. And since we moved to the new office, with reliable internet (we used to lose WiFi connection), we've had literally zero problems since I set it up.

        The software's still shit mind. How can a printer driver bundle be 1GB anyway?!? But you can't have everything.

        1. old_n_grey

          Re: CD/Bittorrent -> Spotify (no shruggy icon)

          I think the HP Inkjet fairy lives nearby. When I bought my first printer about 30 years ago, it was the Deskjet 500C - the one that required removing the black ink cartridge and replacing it with the tri-colour cartridge if you wanted to print anything in colour (you also then had to accept that you weren't going to get proper black). Other than that little foible, and even then the eye-watering cost of replacement cartridges (but not restricted back then to HP), it worked like a charm. So when the time came to replace it, it made sense to stay with HP. And because every darn machine just worked I stayed with HP. As I have said elsewhere, I was an HP employee before my retirement so printers and ink could be purchased cheaply. Although I did buy my current printer post retirement but got 9 free months of ink so it cost me very, very little.

          Nowadays I also pay for Instant Ink. It has worked for me and I have never been left without ink. If the printer wants me to waste ink cleaning or aligning, not a problem. If I want to print loads of A4 photos (quite good enough even with a crappy tri-colour cartridge), I don't even think about it. Based on the number of times I used to buy cartridges (in years gone by I tried refilling and non-OEM cartridges but they were always substandard) I'm spending less on ink than I used to.

          Just hope that fairy doesn't move for a while ...

          1. katrinab Silver badge
            Meh

            Re: CD/Bittorrent -> Spotify (no shruggy icon)

            I got a Canon laser printer about 10 years go. The black cartridge that came with it lasted me 9 years, and the colour cartridges still have about 40% left.

  12. Inventor of the Marmite Laser Silver badge

    Still ain't going to buy an HP printer.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    *Laughs in Canon with Ink Tanks*

  14. Philo T Farnsworth Bronze badge

    Hating printers

    I've never liked inkjet printers -- since I don't do a lot of printing, the darned things always seem to dry out on me when I need them most. I inherited a rather expensive "professional" HP inkjet from an artist friend who used it to make archival quality prints of his work and hated the thing with a passion, since every time I tried to print with the darned thing, the ink would clog and I'd have to put in a brand new cartridge. I finally just sent it to electronic recycling.

    I do have two laser printers, one Brother printer which I bought in 1999 or so, and an HP LaserJet that's not much more recent. About every five years I get refilled cartridges at a local service and am happy as could be.

    Now dealing with CUPS. . . that's another story.

    1. vtcodger Silver badge

      Re: Hating printers

      We have a little used inkjet printer because despite its many flaws, the print quality is pretty good. And installing a color laser printer in linux seems invariably to be a nightmare. The inkjet seems, incredible as it may seem, the least bad choice if we wanted to print a few pages in color every now and then. What I've been doing for several years is printing a CUPS printer test page which includes a small multicolor circle every two weeks. That really does seem to keep the print heads from clogging.

      1. Philo T Farnsworth Bronze badge

        Re: Hating printers

        I guess everyone has a different experience and if you're happy with your inkjet, who am I to argue?

        Curiously, I've never had a problem that I can recollect installing a laser printer and I've gone through a succession of different machines (a couple of Suns, a cheap grey box machine, and a couple of relatively high end systems) and different OSes -- from SunOS to FreeBSD to Linux Mint and currently to Ubuntu -- and don't recall any significant installation problems with either laser printer, at least since the old days of messing with 'printcap' (shudder).

        My current system even happily serves my partner's MacBooks and her iMac with relatively few hiccoughs.

        Every once and a while CUPS seems to lose track of the HP LaserJet and the printer needs to be power cycled but that's pretty rare -- maybe once a year.

        Your mileage may vary.

  15. TWB

    Mixed experiences

    I had one HP AIO inkjet that was very temperamental, but when it worked, printed really well but ultimately stopped working mechanically so I replaced it with a very cheap (£35) but incredibly slow Epson which has been quite reliable.

    I then acquired a simple brother laser which works very reliably and quickly but is very 'dotty' when greyscaling - I have to use a Pi as a printer server though.

    Then my MIL gave me a different HP AIO inkjet and oddly it has been quite good so far - it responds very quickly when you ask it to print or scan and seems happy with aftermarket inks. I guess it'll fall apart soon and then we'll probably fall back on the other 2 printers.

    But yeah, I would not buy an HP device now.

  16. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
    Pirate

    My Mum caught me on Tuesday night

    I was over for dinner, and to fix her radiator, printer and a computer problem. Radiator and pooter fixed, I left her watching telly and adjourned to the little office with the hated Lexmark. My second most personally loathed printer after my late 90s Epson. The last printer I will ever own (if I can possibly help it).

    Anyway Mum wandered into the room looking rather concerned and asked me if I was alright. Is it possible that the screaming wasn't just inside my head?

    I had mumbled quite a few swearwords at the entirely unhelpful error messages, and general pisspoorness of the piece of shit. But I was being quiet enough not to be heard over the telly. Despite the inside of my head being filled with the jeering of my ancestors I didn't take an axe to the damned thing, and then sail my longboat to Lexmark HQ with murder and plunder in mind. Though I'm still considering that last idea, if any fellow commentards fancy joining me on a trip for fun and profit? And vengeance!

    Perhaps it's a mother's instinct - that her house was being corrupted by some evil swearing? Or maybe she uses similar language when she has to deal with fucking printers - so knew what I was up to.

    I have a horrible suspicion that this particular Lexmark only gets used 3 times a year. And this only happens after I've paid a visit, and given it the required offering of impotent rage, before it will deign to work. Perhaps I need to casually rest an axe against it, and see if it improves in future?

    1. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C Silver badge

      Re: My Mum caught me on Tuesday night

      "Perhaps I need to casually rest an axe against it, and see if it improves in future?"

      I used to work in an office that had one of those network linked printer / scanner / photocopier jobbies in. We always had problems until one day a large, black boot print appeared on the front. All the problems went away and it did exactly what we wanted it to do.

      Yes, the boot print was a similar size to my boots. Yes, the boot print matched the tread of my boots. No, I'm not going to comment how it got there. Nobody else asked either, because it printed, copied and scanned and that was all that mattered.

    2. Blue Pumpkin

      Re: My Mum caught me on Tuesday night

      There comes a point in time when you have to announce to people that their technology has gone to the other side and they have no choice but to renew. Even if it's not quite true, but just to keep your sanity ...

      If only it were equally simple with central heating ....

  17. APro

    HPLIP Good, Windows App Bad.

    I've been using HP printers at home since around 2000, mostly second hand ex-office Laserjet stuff (LJ5, 4000N, big ass LJIII Colour as one point). Tried switching to Inkjets (Epson & HP) but got fed up of the ink drying out faster than spittle in Death Valley!?! Ink cost as much as the printers and on one occasion was cheaper to buy a new printer than replace carts which I did when I got the Epson. I'm back to a HP MFP28fdw colour laser. It works great with third party toners (~50% of the HP prices or ~60% for the X versions) and seems fairly well built (not as sturdy as the old 4000 or 5 but good enough). Linux HPLIP works well with few issues (usually only needing a re-install after a distro update). What I hate is the "driver software" on Windows - "Smart App" requires me to log in to HP central just to get the toner levels, let alone do anything like print or scan. It also randomly changes/resets some of the settings of the printer (default page size changing to US Letter - why? My locale is 5000 miles from there!!!). Then there is the constant survey or advertising pop-ups from the App, or follow-up emails "because you've just used our printer, how was it?" - well first, it's "my" printer, morons! etc... Anyway, have switched to a generic PCL driver now which does the job, and scan with a USB drive.

    If you're wondering about photos, we're happy with the LJ printout. Quality isn't great, but the point is the memory, not the pic. If family or friends want a copy of any of our pics, then we send them via email or post a thumb drive.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: HPLIP Good, Windows App Bad.

      well first, it's "my" printer, morons!

      This is not HP's view. Next thing, you'll be telling us it's "your" computer and not Microsoft's.

  18. Johnb89

    When good companies go bad

    Remember HP, founded in a garage, made cool stuff. Reverse Polish notation. Other things back when. Ah the days.

    The last 3 HP things I've interacted with have been steaming piles of sh*te. HP are on my 'never' list.

    Alas.

    1. sarusa Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: When good companies go bad

      'HP' is literally not the same HP that did all that cool stuff (maybe one millionth).

      In 1999 they spun off all the *really* cool stuff (test and measurement) as Agilent. In 2002 they merged with Compaq (ew), and in 2008 they merged with EDS in a giant debacle with some grand lawsuits. They also bought 3Com, Palm, and 3PAR in a buying spree. Each of those is an injection of corporate filth. Then in 2015 they split into HP Enterprises (the enterprisey shite) and HP Inc (the PC and printer business). The atrocious DRMed printers are of course, HP Inc. Which technically can still be traced all the way back to Bill and Dave in a garage, and Woz and Jobs, but yeah, there's nothing left. It's all be scrubbed off by corporate evil.

      1. Mr Dogshit

        Re: When good companies go bad

        Don't forget Autonomy

        1. sarusa Silver badge
          Devil

          Re: When good companies go bad

          Oh crumbs, I DID forget Autonomy, I can't even remember ALL the shitty corporate tossers HP has merged with, my bad!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: When good companies go bad

      The last bit of decent HP kit I used was a 32 channel logic analyser ... came on its own trolley

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: When good companies go bad

        "came on its own trolley"

        Hopefully one with a better sense of direction than our former PM.

      2. sarusa Silver badge

        Re: When good companies go bad

        And that was spun off as Agilent.

  19. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
    Happy

    I'm going out on a limb

    and risking the burning pitchforks...

    But.....

    I love my HP printer... all in 1 deskjet, got wi-fi connections, scanner, copier, printer.. even a fax (not used) does everything I need from such a device. and it works reliably too.

    Why you all ask just before picking up the stones and looking at me like I said Jehovah.

    Because it was made in 2005 before the current 'management' took over... and its only ever coupled to my linux box so no chance of a m$ inspired auto borking sorry update

    It just works..... and it will be a shame when it finally dies(chances are... after I do)

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: I'm going out on a limb

      Old and new HP kit might as well be from different planets.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: I'm going out on a limb

        The current models of big office all in one laserjets are Samsung. They are a totally different beast inside compared to what we would normally see or expect of an HP LaserJet.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: I'm going out on a limb

          Whether that sounds good or bad depends on when one's expectations of Laserjets were formed. Mine are rather old.

        2. CountCadaver Silver badge

          Re: I'm going out on a limb

          HP bought Samsung's printer business back in 2016/2017 and promptly took anything Samsung off sale

  20. Maventi

    While I wouldn't touch HP inkjets with a 10 foot pole, we bought a colour HP LaserJet MFC about five years ago for home use and it's been absolutely brilliant. Cheap to run and everything about it just works even on the software side. It's spat out close to 6,000 trouble-free pages to date.

    Though admittedly we only have Macs and Linux machines, never tried it with Windows so I can't vouch for the latter. Historically I've had a very good run with Linux support via hplip so that was my incentive to go with the brand.

  21. FuzzyTheBear
    Mushroom

    just the title

    is hilarious. Come on .. HP think they can change our impression ( no pun intended ) of their products / company being total c*** ?

    Letter to HP :

    If you want to be liked and sell printers change your idiotic and pointless ink cartridge policy.

    sweep it out the door and let customers choose what they do when they do it.

    HP was first to introduce an extremely fine print on every sheet so that the print could be tied to a particular machine .. remember that one ?

    That's your second job , stop doing it.

    Network / forced updates ? .. would you please let go of that ?

    It's the whole bloody dang thing with you guys : you don't get it , you have to make radical policy changes for you to survive.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Relax

    There is something that's cheaper than printer ink and will make you feel good. Although you may feel the need to keep buying it, you aren't locked into a single supplier. Yes: Heroin (™ Bayer).

  23. sarusa Silver badge
    Devil

    'less hated'

    Having to deal with HP, Epson, Canon, and Brother printers/MFCs among friends and family I can tell you for sure that no printers are as hated as (modern) HP's. 'Next time, before you buy a printer, come talk to me.'

  24. bertkaye

    a word from Joe

    Hi. I'm Joseph Stalin. I'm jealous because people hate HP more than they hate me. You peasants.

    1. Excused Boots Bronze badge

      Re: a word from Joe

      I believe Adolf would like a word!

      1. CountCadaver Silver badge

        Re: a word from Joe

        Ditto Pol Pot

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The only printers are laser

    Everybody here should know that by now

  26. ecofeco Silver badge

    HP can piss right off, forever

    HP printers have sucked for a long, long time now. They used to be simple, robust and easy to set up. About 20 years ago.

    I was forced to buy an HP for my last printer as no store in in my entire region had anything else. All I wanted was a simple printer/scanner. All I found were very expensive models by everyone and only ONE maker who had a very cheap one. Yeah, HP. The price difference was literally hundreds of dollars.

    HP dominates my region as they have a very large presence here. And no, it's not Silicon Valley. There is an obvious market protection "understanding" here.

    Why I didn't I order it on-line? Because home delivery loses all convenience if you have to send the purchase back. But did I look? Of course I did. And nobody had a matching product. So for price, there was no other option.

    Much like MS, fuck all thing HP as well.

    1. Cris E

      Re: HP can piss right off, forever

      You can hate your printer every day until you despair and throw it out, or you can hate the return policy one time. This is a simple Quality Of Life choice, and I choose to avoid HP.

  27. Graham 25

    I am still using a 10 year old Samsung printer. It was bought second hand as I tried an HP printer and it was garbage.

    My printer has had numerous fuser units, toner cartridges (third party of course) and imaging drums over the years. There are still units being sold on Ebay in an emergency if it really fails.

    The wrold needs a decent consumer printer manufacturer as HP is just sh*te.

  28. Stuart Castle Silver badge

    I have an HP Inkjet MFD. Since homeschooling, it's barely used, but it is handy if I ever have to print or scan anything.

    However, I don't like the bloody app you are nagged to install. It's cool that I can print from my phone, but I am quite capable of doing that using the standard iOS controls. I don't need to be nagged to install an app.

    OK, the app is good for scanning, but I scan less than I print. I'm lucky if I need to scan more than 2 or 3 docs a year.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    customers hate printer products?

    not at all, customers hate printer brands.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    HP Smart app

    otherwise known 365 Mb (and counting) of utter joy. And that's just the install file, you ain't seen the Beast in action yet...

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    there's no bad

    advertising. Particularly as you can offset it as business cost.

  32. martinusher Silver badge

    HP corporate obviously has sense of humor

    Great little adverts, great little article (which should be read in conjunction with the other articles describing how "every printer's an HP" elsewhere on this site). The irony is overwhelming. Perhaps HP product management really does have a sense of humor.

    The fundamental problem they have is that many of us have memories of printers that "just worked". Domestic printers have lagged a bit behind office products but I recall having first office printers and then domestic printers that just worked a couple of decades ago. They include a rather nice Toshiba double sided laser that never jammed once in the several years I used it and other printers you had to blow the dust off before getting that clean copy (a Brother LED printer, for example). But over the last 10 years or so there seems to have been a systematic effort to make printers more fiddly, less reliable and significantly more expensive to use. The nadir is, of course, the modern HP ink jet, a horrible thing that is always a crap shoot whether it will work without another $70 or so spent of ink cartridges. Recently when our workhorse LJ3300 died yet again (scanner error, it stops the printer working even if you don't use the scanner**) the search was on for a non-HP replacement, something made a bit tricky by other known companies jumping on the income stream bandwagon. I'm trying out an openly Chinese make this time, one that was not only relatively inexpensive but the supplies (toner/drum) cost is reasonable, significantly less than the printer. It seems to work. I daresay I'll hear political blowhards will go on about copying and the like but, realistically, patents do run out, you can't just keep milking something for ever (and 'adding software to stop things from working' doesn't quality as product development -- sorry).

    (**I've fixed this before but its an amazing amount of messing around.)(You'd be forgiven for thinking that HP product management deliberately made the product like this to limit its life span.)

  33. Joseba4242

    ink Waste

    Not to forget the most insidious of tactics, self tests.

    Ensuring that every time you switch the printer on, a significant amount of every ink cartridge is used. Ensuring that you have to replace all of them after a while, even if you print 99% black only.

    Or the tactics to mix all colors to print black.

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