Funai Begins Selling KODAK VERITÉ 55, Promising up to 50-Percent Ink Savings

verite 55Back in February 2015, Funai Electric announced that it would be licensing and selling Kodak-brand consumer and SOHO color-inkjet printers and All-in-Ones. On June 12th, 2015, it followed up with the announcement that it is launching its first Kodak‐branded product, the Kodak VERITÉ 55 Wireless All‐In‐One Inkjet printer, which will be available on retail shelves this week in the United States.

Funai says it developed the new line of All‐in‐One Verite color inkjet printers to address “lingering consumer dissatisfaction with the high cost of ink and cartridges that run out of ink too fast” – a strategy Kodak had previously used to market its inkjet printers and All-in-Ones for home users before exiting the consumer inkjet-printer market. Funai, which is headquartered in Osaka, Japan, also purchased Lexmark’s consumer inkjet-printer division in 2013 for $100 million.

Similar to what Kodak did, Funai is promising users savings of up to 50 percent on their printing costs. Included in the box with the VERITÉ 55 are two replacement ink cartridges, a high-yield 5 XL black and a high-yield 5 XL tri-color cartridge. The XL black cartridge is said to yield 400 pages, while the tri-color ink cartridge is said to yield 360 pages, and each are priced at $35. This translates into a black cost per page of 8.7 cents, and a color cost per page of 18.5 cents. Extra-high-yield XXL black and color cartridges are also available, with the 5 XXL black cartridge yielding up to 600 pages and the 5 XXL tri-color cartridge yielding up to 5oo pages. The standard-yield black cartridge ($9.97) yields up to 200 pages, while the standard-yield tri-color cartridge ($17.97) yields up to 180 pages.

Funai rates the Kodak VERITÉ 55 Wireless Printer at 10 (black)/4.2 (color) ppm. It provides print, scan, and copy, with manual two‐sided printing (no automatic document feeder). Mobile print and scan via smartphones and tablets is available via the free Kodak VERITÉ Printer App that’s available for Apple and Android mobile devices. The printer also supports Near Field Communication (NFC) for tap-and-print-and-scan wireless functionality for Android smart phones and tablets.  Also provides is wireless direct and local Wi‐Fi connectivity to enable wireless printing from mobile devices through the Kodak VERITÉ Printer App, Apple AirPrint, and Google Cloud Print. For complete specifications, visit Funai here.

The KODAK VERITÉ 55 Wireless Printer is available at WalMart for $79.47.

Our Take

Funai Electric is certainly going out on a limb marketing consumer inkjet printers in the United States. Both Kodak and Lexmark sold-off their consumer inkjet-printer divisions for a reason. And, while Kodak was marketing its consumer inkjet printers, there was a great deal of user dissatisfaction with them (Wirth Consulting’s testing revealed several major shortcomings for one such Kodak All-in-One, and we did not recommend it). Hopefully, Funai has addressed these shortcomings. Similarly, despite promising substantial ink savings, cost per page using the 5 XL cartridges is not particularly competitive (although customers will definitely appreciate Funai bundling the 5 XL cartridges with the unit). Overall, however, with the many far more advanced business inkjets now marketed by Hewlett-Packard, Epson, and Brother, Funai will likely have a tough battle ahead of it in the United States.

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3 Responses

  1. Deedadee says:

    This printer would have been the NUMBER ONE printer in sales in the country had the color ink been in SEPARATE CARTRIDGES. All the El Cheapo printers, like in Walmart for 29 to 59 bucks, all have the combo cart, which is synonomous with not being a serious printer that will be used more than a few months before the ink dries up and it gets put in the closet. The color ink could actually be almost 3 times the price as what is stated, in this scenario: print out pictures for your child on or near Valentine’s Day that includes mostly red hearts, and for each page of red hearts that comes out of the printer, the other colors are also getting used but in a ghost-like fashion. When the color cartridge runs out of one color, the cartridge will probably be useless. Therefore, every time you use one color, you are also using the other colors whether you are printing with them or not. If what I print is mostly red, then it will deplete the cartridge and one third the stated time and all I got to use was one third of the ink in the cartridge. This is nothing new, and has always been the hallmark of cheap printers since the beginning of printing time. Too bad that this new printer has joined ranks with those low-quality printers by employing the all-in-one color cartridge scheme. EPIC FAIL.

    • Hear, hear! We have always disliked tri-color ink cartridges and feel that they are responsible for much of the prejudice against inkjets. Then, along comes HPs Instant Ink Program which allowed us to be comfortable selecting an HP Envy 5660 with its tri-color cartridge for our home printer.

      We will be posting our experience with HP Instant Ink soon. In the meantime, we parted with $4.99 for a monthly subscription in return for high-yield ink cartridges that showed up within days. Plus, we should no longer have to worry about how much it costs to print that photo, remembering to print with black ink only or running out of ink. Stay tuned to this Web site for more.

  2. Rex says:

    Look Deedad. The ink cartridges are separate, and it’s a great printer.

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