HP printers should have EPEAT ecolabels revoked, trade group demands

Enlarge / HP sometimes bricks third-party ink and toner that’s over 90 percent full, Imaging Technology Council claims. (credit: Getty)

HP printers have received a lot of flak historically and recently for invasive firmware updates that end up preventing customers from using ink with their printers. HP also encourages printer customers to sign up for HP+, a program that includes a free ink-subscription trial and irremovable firmware that allows HP to brick the ink when it sees fit.

Despite this, HP markets dozens of its printers with Dynamic Security and the optional HP+ feature as being in the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) registry, suggesting that these printers are built with the environment in mind and, more specifically, do not block third-party ink cartridges. Considering Dynamic Security and HP+ printers do exactly that, the International Imaging Technology Council (IITC) wants the General Electronics Council (GEC), which is in charge of the EPEAT registry, to revoke at least 101 HP printer models from the EPEAT registry, which HP has “made a mockery of.”

Before we get into the IITC complaint sent May 22 to  GEC Senior Manager Katherine Larocque, we should note the IITC’s obvious stakes in this. The nonprofit trade association was founded in 2000 and says it represents “toner and inkjet cartridge remanufacturers, component suppliers, and cartridge collectors in North America.” So its members stand to lose a lot of money from tactics like Dynamic Security. The IITC already filed a complaint to the GEC about HP in 2019 for firmware blocking non-HP ink, but there didn’t seem to be any noticeable results.

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