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Dell releases multifunction printers

The company adds four new models to its printer line, including a photo printer and a business-oriented laser printer that can handle copying, scanning and faxing.

Dell expanded its printer line on Tuesday, entering two new areas of the market.

The Round Rock, Texas-based PC maker added a multifunction inkjet photo printer for consumers and a multifunction laser printer for businesses. Until now, Dell's printer products had been limited to single-function printers. The company has been hinting at plans to expand the line since early this year.

Although Dell's main focus remains on other product lines, particularly servers and storage systems, the company has said its printer business has so far exceeded its expectations, resulting in about 2 million unit sales in the first year. Dell expects printers to produce $1 billion in revenue this year. Over time, building a large customer base will bring in additional revenue for ink, toner, paper and other supplies, the company has said.

Dell's new consumer-oriented machine, the Dell Photo All-in-One Printer 922, costs $129 and can print borderless photos using a special six-color ink cartridge. It can also print, copy and scan documents.

Dell's MFP Laser Printer 1600n offers businesses laser printing, copying, scanning and faxing. The $399 machine can also be attached to a network, allowing numerous workers to use it, according to Dell.

In addition, Dell is offering two new monochrome laser printers. Its Dell Laser Printer 1700 prints up to 25 pages per minute and costs $199. The 1700n has the same features but can also work on a network. It costs $299.

All of the printers are available now.

Meanwhile, Dell has said it plans to further expand the printer business internationally. After beginning Dell-brand printer sales in the United States in March 2003, Dell launched its products in Europe and Australia over the past two quarters. It plans to expand its printers into the Japanese and Chinese markets before the end of the year.