This morning here in San Francisco, HP announced their first web-enabled printer called the TouchSmart. With a touchscreen control panel that has the look and feel of an iPhone, the TouchSmart will offer apps that make it easy for one-touch printing. HP has already teamed up with companies like Fandango (movie-ticket printing), Google (maps, calendar printing, etc.), USA Today (news article printing), and Nickelodeon (kids activities) to offer useful applications. The printer's API is completely open, so you can expect hundreds of more free apps — like RSS reader apps and airline apps — to become available by its Fall launch date.
To see what else I thought about the printer and to find out how much it will cost,
The eco-friendly person that I am, at first I was perturbed by the fact that this printer will only promote more printing and unnecessary paper usage — when you can already buy your movie tickets online and pick them up at the theater without having to print them. But then there are those instances when you need your boarding pass printed up in an instant, or you don't want look at your laptop while following a recipe, so this printer is perfect for a variety of scenarios where you don't want to be computer dependent.
Seeing the printer in person, it sure isn't something you're going to be able to sit on the end of your kitchen counter (it's rather large), but it is wireless, so if you've got the room for it, even better . . . and keep in mind, it won't need to be connected to a laptop or computer. The Photosmart Premium printer will retail for $399.