The case of the solid gold printer

It is a marvel worldwide since being built by printer manufacturer HP in 2006. The company saw the opportunity to celebrate sales in the Middle East by building a printer covered in 24 karat gold. The fully functioning laser printer is the most expensive in the world, and was displayed at the Gitex Convention in 2006. The convention is one of the world’s top IT gatherings and sees exhibitors from over 61 countries gathering to display their wares.

HP had been having a spectacularly good sales year in the Middle East and to show off their impressive profits, they build a fully functional gold printer. Of course, the cartridges are not made of gold, and anyone intending to buy the printer on auction will be relieved to hear that. The printer, with a value estimated at about $20 000, was made specifically to be auctioned off. The proceeds of the auction were designated for a charity, but the publicity that the printer manufacturer got from this was priceless.

The printer is an impressive spectacle and drew crowds from the all over the world at the Gitex Convention. While some may dub its building as folly, those who understand the nature of the publicity exercise might be jealous that they didn’t think of it first.

The printer manufacturer has a great reputation worldwide and is sure to have built on its reputation with this publicity stunt. One thing that is for sure is that sales in the Middle East have continued to rise, and the company is expanding into further corners of the world on a daily basis.

As for the person who eventually bought the machine on auction, it is doubtful that they will even actually use it. It has more likely become a display item in someone’s personal gallery. If it was put to use, imagine the costs of finding cartridges and gold paper for it to print on. And not that HP has made a printer out of gold, what will its next step be? Perhaps we are not too far away from a future filled with printers made of precious metals.