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Don’t Take HP’s Free Ink, Unless You Are OK Never Being Able To Use Anything Else

HP Plus Comes With Huge Catch

If you purchase some HP printers, you are offered a limited time chance to get six months of free ink, a better warranty and even get a tree planted in your name.  You have to sign up for HP Plus with seven days of plugging in your printer, and HP will happily remind you of this deadline constantly, until you sign up or your time expires.  If you do sign up for it, you do indeed get free ink for six months but you also agree to a firmware update in the fine print.  Once a member of HP Plus, your printer will never accept any ink which isn’t directly from HP.  That seems inconvenient but not awful, unless you recall everything else HP have done with their printers.

HP have been in the news quite a bit, such as when it was revealed that the printer used more ink than was necessary.  In a way, that didn’t matter because HP also included an artificial end date on the life of the ink cartridges.  Once that time arrived, no matter how much ink you had left in the cartridge your printer would claim it was empty.   They’ve also tried blocking official HP ink cartridges from a different region than where the printer was bought from functioning, on top of an update which blocked all third party ink cartridges.  Legally speaking, most of these attempts failed.

However, by signing up for HP Plus you specifically agreed to limit the cartridges you use so you will be out of luck.  If you were hoping that cancelling HP Plus would unlock your printer, apparently the firmware update is irreversible; you’ll need to buy a new printer.

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