When you look at incredibly popular products such as Apple's iPhone for example, it's easy to see how such an advanced piece of technology took the world by storm and continues to do so. I think the very same is true of the wireless portable printer which has in the last few years been improved to the point where its gone from an expensive, frivolous luxury to an important and everyday object in the homes of many people. The question is why.
To start with, as is true of many new pieces of technology, the price of the once very expensive wireless portable printer has dropped dramatically in recent years. It's very comparable to early computers which used to be incredibly expensive, and yet nowadays you could easily fork out just a few hundred dollars for a computer with reasonable specifications and capabilities. So whereas a printer model may have once cost a minimum of 200-300 dollars with the most advanced products costing around a 1000 dollars it's now possible nowadays to purchase a device that's only 100-200 dollars. Not only this, but the assumption is that such a low price means an inferior product - this is simple not true, and many brands such as HP and Printstik offer very an incredible compromise between price and quality. For example the HP OfficeJet H470 Mobile Printer is only around a 150 dollars, and it comes with optional wireless connectivity that can utilize both a wireless network that you can find all over the place from your own home to Starbucks and it also allows Bluetooth wireless data transfer which means that you can transfer the information from your laptop, smart phone and even some wireless portable hard drives.
For me, the truth is I could live without my wireless portable printer, but the reality of the situation is that I don't need one. However I can straight away see people in situations where a portable printer would become as important as their Blackberry for example. Imagine a businessman who quickly needed to alter and then print of some documents before an important meeting. Before he had his wireless, mobile printer he would have had to have quickly driven home in order to print of what he needed. What he has now is a Printstik printer in his car at all times, it's very small and is literally just a few inches thick and it's just long enough to hold an A4 piece of paper - but that's it. It's very basic, it prints in just black and white, it's light and small and isn't used for regular printing. But nevertheless the time will come for everyone when they realise they've forgotten to print something important out. For most people this is an infrequent occurrence because they don't often print things out. But it just takes a few seconds and you can instantly think of a half dozen of professions who print a lot, and print on the go.
Imagine how great it would be for a doctor or nurse visiting the patient to be able to print of the prescription right then and there. Or to print out whatever medical forms were necessary right then and there without having to waste time going back to somewhere to print out what is necessary.
But why stop a professionals?
What about a family on holiday who want their pictures then and there, they can do that not with wireless mobile picture printers. Or what about the family which only has one printer which everyone is constantly nagging at the person unfortunate enough to have the printer connected to their computer to use. Instead of the hassle of transferring work/data to a USB stick, loading it onto the computer that the printer is connected to and then finally printing. Imagine if you knew the printer was downstairs in the kitchen for example, and all you had to do was hit print without the bother and hassle.
This is what technology does for us, it makes our lives easier. This isn't going to change the world, but if that businessman's deal goes through, or that doctor prints of a prescription then and there which allows him to go and see another patient. That family who went on holiday to visit their relatives, they can now print of their pictures then and there and even give a copy to their relatives.
To the right person, a wireless portable printer makes a difference, the question is whether that person is you?