BLI Honors “Outstanding Achievement Award” Winners
June 12, 2009 – Hackensack (NJ) – Buyers Laboratory Inc. (BLI), the world’s leading independent evaluator of document imaging products and solutions, today announced its Spring 2009 “Outstanding Achievement Award” winners, with the honors going to Konica Minolta, Lexmark, Océ and Xerox.
Xerox Awarded For Innovation And Best-In-Class Energy Efficiency
Xerox has been honored with two BLI “Outstanding Achievement Awards”—one for the innovation of its new ColorQube 9200 Series and another for the outstanding energy efficiency demonstrated by the WorkCentre 7435 and WorkCentre 7428 in their respective classes.
Innovative Pricing Structure And Product Design Earn Xerox ColorQube Series Honors
The new ColorQube Series models are the first fully-featured workgroup MFPs utilizing Xerox’s proprietary solid ink marking technology. It combines the ink and printhead technology of Xerox’s solid ink Phaser line with hardware modules and the next-generation Xerox SMART Controller common to Xerox’s workgroup MFPs. Designed for office workgroups looking to lower their color run costs or for a cost effective way to adopt color into their work environment, the ColorQube 9201, 9202 and 9203 feature an innovative pricing structure that allows users to get useful color output for the same cost as black and white. In fact, Xerox estimates that under its unique pricing structure, approximately 75 percent of all color prints will cost either 1 or 3 cents, greatly reducing the cost of color printing.
The models create images by printing tiny spots (called pixels) of black and color on a page. The machines automatically count how many color pixels are used to produce each printed page and each page is tallied on the appropriate meter. For example, an office document with a logo and small graphic will count as a black-only page and be charged accordingly—1 cent on average. Documents with moderate color coverage, like a Web page or brochure, will cost approximately 3 cents, while those printed pages with heavy color, such as a real estate flyer, will cost an average of 8 cents.
The units’ unique technology contributes to their exceptional ease of use. “In addition to offering excellent ease of programming jobs from both its well-designed control panel and its print drivers, the units’ ease of user maintenance far outshines the toner-based products it competes with in this speed range,” said BLI Assignments Editor George Mikolay. Each solid ink stick is uniquely shaped to fit in its correct slot—cyan, magenta, yellow or black—and is very easy to load. The machines hold six sticks per color, greatly increasing the ink yields and thus reducing downtime. In addition, when ink is running low, users can simply top off inks to avoid having to interrupt any jobs. The devices’ inks are cartridge-free, so there’s no cartridge to remove, which greatly reduces waste. “Other than the ink sticks, the devices feature only one customer-replaceable component, a long-life cleaning unit with an average yield of 200,000 prints,” said BLI Manager of Laboratory Testing Pete Emory. “In contrast, the ColorQube Series’ toner-based competitors require much more user intervention, requiring not only replacement of four toner cartridges, but sometimes four drums and developer as well.” The ColorQube 9201, 9202 and 9203 also feature embedded help videos that offer quick troubleshooting assistance for situations such as loading staples or clearing paper jams, right at the user interface. In addition, the paper path is illuminated with blue LEDs making access less intimidating.
The ColorQube Series is also EIP-enabled, allowing the device to integrate easily with third-party workflow applications to simplify tasks such as accounting and document management.
“Meeting the needs of the customer is always at the core of Xerox innovation, and this ‘Outstanding Achievement Award’ reflects our dedication to delivering on that promise,” said Jeff Blank, vice president, Solid Ink Business, Xerox Corporation. “The ColorQube 9200 Series cuts the cost of color prints by up to 62 percent and generates 90 percent less waste without sacrificing performance or print quality.”
Praise For Xerox’s Best-In-Class Energy Efficiency
Utilizing Xerox’s LED print head technology, the Xerox WorkCentre 7435 and 7428 were found to consume significantly less energy than all of the competitive devices in their respective test groups when running BLI’s environmental job stream test, which replicates real-world usage. In fact, the projected annual energy costs for both the WorkCentre 7435 and 7428 are by far the lowest, at 65.5 percent and 57.7 percent lower than the overall average of their respective groups.
In addition, energy consumption for both models was either the lowest or among the lowest of the group in most running modes. Energy consumption was also below the average in idle and sleep modes. According to Xerox, these units will also qualify for the more stringent version of ENERGY STAR, Version 1.1, that is due to launch in July.
“The tests also show that the Xerox models achieve their energy consumption advantages without sacrificing productivity, said BLI Test Specialist Joe Tischner. “In fact, both the WorkCentre 7435 and 7428 have a faster than average tested recovery time from idle, energy-save and sleep modes.”
“Xerox is committed to delivering best-in-class multifunction products like the WorkCentre 7435, and we believe its performance raises the bar in this product category,” said David Bates, vice president of Office Marketing Programs, Xerox Corporation. “Additionally, we are working across the product line on initiatives that help our customers be better environmental citizens. We are honored by this recognition from BLI for the significant progress we have made on this product.”
Robust Print Driver Customization Earns Konica Minolta Honors
As the speed of doing business continues to accelerate and the need for greater work efficiency becomes more and more critical, Konica Minolta has been recognized by BLI for their innovative new MyTab printer driver design feature, which can save valuable time during printing.
While the ability to set up profiles for frequently used jobs has been available in print drivers for many years now, the MyTab feature on new Konica Minolta MFP print drivers allows users to customize an entire tab.
“We are all familiar to customizing the landing page of our Internet service provider, search engine or Facebook account to suit our personal needs, but up until now we have all had to work within the fixed restraints of print driver design, irrespective of our personal workflow requirements,” said BLI European Lab and Research Manager David Sweetnam.
“With MyTab, users are able to set up a single print driver tab and design it to have all the settings they need, including paper handling, finishing, image quality, watermarking, and more, thereby removing the clutter that is often confusing and unwanted. With MyTab, users can now take full advantage of the driver feature set with a minimum of fuss and reduce the risk of errors, as all required features can be viewed at a glance.”
Océ Praised For Print Driver Customization Capabilities
Océ has been recognized by BLI for their innovative new MyTab printer driver design feature, which can save valuable time during printing.
While the ability to set up profiles for frequently used jobs has been available in print drivers for many years now, the MyTab feature on new Océ MFP print drivers allows users to customize an entire tab.
“With MyTab, users are able to set up a single print driver tab and design it to have all the settings they need, including paper handling, finishing, image quality, watermarking, and more, thereby removing the clutter that is often confusing and unwanted,” said Sweetnam. “Users can now take full advantage of the driver feature set with a minimum of fuss and reduce the risk of errors, as all required features can be viewed at a glance.”
“Today is all about utilizing new and powerful technology of the 21st century to make getting things done easy, personal and as efficient as possible,” said Tom O'Neill, vice president, product and strategic marketing, Océ North America. “MyTab lets users customize their Océ print driver so the features and functions they most commonly use are now on one tab. They don’t have to navigate through multiple tabs available in the driver to select the functions they need, but rather can construct their own MyTab and have all the functions they normally use only a click away. This saves valuable time, reduces confusion and errors and makes it easy for users to maximize their printing productivity.”
Lexmark Honored For Leveraging Its Embedded Platform To Add Value
Lexmark International, Inc. has earned a BLI “Outstanding Achievement Award” for leveraging its embedded platform to provide value-added capabilities standard on its newer MFPs. Lexmark MFPs introduced after 2006 that have the eTask interface and hard drive are built on the Embedded Solutions Framework platform, which allows users to enhance the device with workflow solutions without the need for additional hardware because the solutions run on the device itself.
“Lexmark’s embedded solutions, MyMFP, Eco-Copy and Remote Color Copy, are available at no additional cost to the customer and enhance the functionality of their Lexmark MFP,” said BLI Senior Printer Analyst Marlene Orr. “MyMFP is a real time-saver because it allows users to carry their personal settings on a USB drive and access all of those presets, saving multiple keystrokes each time they use the device.”
Beginning with the X650 series Lexmark introduced in October 2008, the standard embedded MyMFP solution allows users to save commonly used copier, printer, scanner or fax settings on a USB memory drive. When users insert their drive, their customized selections appear on the touch-screen display.
Also available at no charge from Lexmark are the Eco-Copy and Remote Copy solutions. Eco-Copy provides a copy button that automatically defaults the device to more environmentally friendly settings, including duplexing, lighter toner darkness and N-up copying. Remote Copy allows users to make a color copy on a monochrome machine by scanning a color document on a monochrome Lexmark MFP and having it automatically printed on a color Lexmark printer on the network.
“Eco-Copy makes it easy for a company to be green and save money on output costs,” said BLI’s Orr. “Because the eTask interface can be customized, a customer could choose to replace the regular copy button with the Eco-Copy button, saving paper by defaulting all copying to duplex mode. Remote Color Copy is also a cost-saver, offering users the convenience of making color copies using a monochrome MFP by using existing resources rather than upgrading to a more costly color MFP.”
“Lexmark's laser multifunction products, combined with our award-winning eTask touch screen, offer Lexmark's Embedded Solutions Framework (eSF) as a standard component to give our customers an easy and cost-effective path to leverage the power of the device and ultimately print less and save more,” said Marty Canning, Lexmark vice president and president of its Printing Solutions and Services Division. “This platform provides value to our customers with existing applications and also the flexibility for customized solutions that are tailored to meet our customers' specific needs. Being acknowledged by BLI with an ‘Outstanding Achievement Award’ is an honor, and we are very appreciative of this recognition.”
About Buyers Laboratory
For 48 years, Buyers Lab (BLI) has been the leading independent office-equipment testing lab and business consumer advocate. In addition to publishing the industry's most comprehensive and accurate test reports on office document imaging devices, each representing months of exhaustive hands-on testing in BLI's US and UK laboratories, the company has been the leading source of competitive intelligence for industry professionals on copiers, printers, fax machines, scanners, duplicators, wide-format devices and multifunctional products. The company's databases cover over 12,000 products globally and have a long-standing reputation for being the industry's most trustworthy and complete source for specifications and side-by-side comparisons, all of which are available as part of bliQ, BLI’s Web-based encyclopedic resource. Subscribers also have access to BLI's renowned Lab Test Reports, First Look Reports, Solutions Reports, Environmental Reports, news articles and a complete library of manufacturer’s product literature, as well as valuable tools including a Product Configurator and Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Calculator.
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