In case you weren't aware, the IFA global trade show is currently on the go in Berlin, and so far we've seen Samsung unveil their latest additions to the Galaxy Note series with the Note 4 and Note Edge handsets. Accompanying the Note 4 handsets is the Gear S smart watch and their first attempt at a virtual reality device, the appropriately named Gear VR. There'll be more about the Gear VR (and Oculus Rift) in an upcoming article by Cory McNutt, but for now, lets talks about the Smart MultiXpress range of Android-powered printers that Samsung have announced earlier today.
Yes, you did read that correctly, Samsung have utilized the versatility of the Android Operating System to power a new range of Multi-Function Printers(MFP's). Samsung says that the Smart MultiXpress range of MFP's is designed to be more independent and scalable to a variety of business environments, the Android operating system will provide a more consumer friendly, and customizable experience for the end-user. The Android system is called the Smart UX Center, and it offers a similar touch-based experience as its Galaxy line of devices. The Smart MultiXpress MFP can operate without the a computer being attached. As you can see from the images, the Smart MultiXpress range of printers is meant for the business world, they are substantial looking devices, certainly larger than most home users would ever need.
As you can see from the images, the interface is basically a 10.1-inch Android tablet that has been attached to the side of the printer. This means the user can print content from web-browsers, emails, maps and other images and documents without the need to access a computer or server. Thanks to the touch-screen abilities and haptic feedback, the user can preview and edit documents on the fly. Users can print on-the-go via the use of Samsung's Cloud Print protocol.
Samsung say that they have come up with this new way of printing because of business users being increasingly separated from laptops and PC's, business users are making more use of smart phones and tablets to conduct their everyday activities. Thanks to the Smart MultiXpress range of Android-powered MFP's, Samsung expects "increased efficiency and productivity for the the mobile and fluid workplace".
On to the nitty gritty, and the Smart MultiXpress range consists of 10 models:
First we have the X4300 series of A4 color MFP's, and these can print from 22-30 pages per minute (ppm) depending which model you have, and are able to scan up to 100 double sided images per minute (ipm) thanks to the included Dual-Scan ADF technology. There are three models in the family, with the X4300LX having the capacity to print up to 85000 pages per month, with 23,000 pages for black and white toner and 100,000 per drum.
If you thought that was a lot of pages, the K4350 series of A3 Monochrome MFP's can output up to 35 ppm, and up to 120 double-sided ipm in Mono mode depending which of the three models is chosen. Drum output has increased for the k4350LX to 200,000 pages.
The M5370 Monochrome series makes the jump to A4, and comprises of two models, the M4370LX and M5370LX printers. A page output of 43 and 53 ppm respectively is possible, with a drum output of 100,000 pages.
The M4580 range of A4 is also Monochrome only, and has two models M4580FX and M4583FX, both of which are capable of 45 pages per minute. An output of 200,000 pages per month is possible, with each drum capable of printing 100,000 pages.
As yet, its not known exactly what version of Android will be running on the Smart MultiXpress range of Multi-Function Printers, and we are also in the dark in regards to the hardware specifications of the attached touch-screen. But it does seem that once again, the Android operating system is making inroads on the business world.
So we have Android powering printers, TV's, car entertainment systems, tablets, phones, monitors, laptops (thanks HP I'm sure), what else is there? And where would you like to see Android go next? Let us know in the comments section or at our Google Plus page.