Based on its own case study, Hewlett-Packard recently evaluated its inkjet products in the Chinese marketplace as:

• There is significant price difference between original cartridge and alternatives
• The Chinese market is very sensitive to price
• Resulting in declining share of HP original cartridge

Hewlett Packard’s Singapore-based vice-president for the supplies business of the company’s Imaging and Printing Group in Asia Pacific/Japan, John Solomon, has revealed that its research labs had developed a new black ink cartridge called `Simple Black’ to address what it has found to be the widest application of consumer ink jets: monochrome documents printed using the economical `draft’ mode of its printers.

“We introduced the ‘Simple Black’ in China, with great success and by the end of this year we plan to offer it in India, our other big market in Asia, where customers are very price conscious,” Mr. Solomon said. It will be priced at around Rs. 500 (US$10.90 or A$14.66) — which will make it only a little costlier than a refilled or third party cartridge, but about half what an original ‘black’ for a HP printer costs today.

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