You and a computer printer you’ve been matched to for a decade share a lot of experiences together. 

Actually, the human one of us, shares those experiences for both of us.

Nevertheless, I was pretty disappointed in my HP printer’s lack of its usual, immediate reliability when I tried to print a family photo today.

My HP Photosmart Premium printer let me pick it as the honored one to print a great family photo.

But it balked and asked me to replace the — as you know — very expensive ink cartridges.  I obeyed, and the test page was printed but only as a “local test page”. 

Then, in choosing my printer, I found that the print functions were in grey ghost-type font and would not ‘click’.  So I downloaded HP’s print test “doctor” program and finally reached a message indicating that the printer is in perfect shape but my formerly reliable companion could not print without an updated version of Adobe Flash.

I do have an account with Adobe, went in and search and found Adobe had discontinued updates and servicing of its Flash program in 12-20.  Its side-notes indicated it had given everyone several years’ notice that it was discontinuing the program.

Bottom line, Dear Readers, is that my HP computer and those of many other HP customers will simply not work without the Adobe Flash update.  Making matters worse, HP sends complaining customers to Adobe and Adobe washes its hands and suggests HP should be providing its own customers with a solution…insofar as HP had several years’ notice from Adobe that Flash was being discontinued..

Below is a copy of my “edited” comment to HP President Enrique Lores, followed by his automated response (Note I searched the Internet for his photo and couldn’t find one. Interesting). 

I offer this comment as a former corporate leader responsible for customer service: the days are gone when companies can produce products with “planned obsolescence” without expecting a digital backlash, at the least.

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Dear Sir:

Over the years, I’ve enjoyed my HP Photosmart Premium, All-In-One printer.

I have purchased hundreds of dollars worth of HP564 ink from Best Buy, Office, and Costco over the years. Today, I tried to print a photo after not having done so for over a year.

After uninstalling and reinstalling printer drivers as instructed I was finally greeted with a message that the machine wouldn’t work with my HP Laptop or this custom desktop without an update of Adobe Flash, which discontinued updates after 12-29.

I find that customer service to be inconsistent with my long years with the company, If I don’t receive a telephone call or email response I’ll have no choice but to throw away my decade-old, trustworthy printer and switch my career-long relationship with HP to a competitor.

That is how serious I regard HP’s lack of Customer Care as to refuse an update or other remedy that supports the continued use of a perfectly good, reliable printer.

I hope that this heartfelt description of an unhappy event is useful to you.

Best wishes. Dave Harbour

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Dear Valued Customer,

Your message is important to me. Although I cannot personally respond to your message due to the volume of messages I receive, I often pass along suggestions and observations to my colleagues throughout HP. If action is required, I’ll have someone follow up.

If you need help, other information, or wish to send an e-mail about particular HP products and services, please visit our Contact HP page.

Sincerely,

Enrique Lores President & CEO,
HP Inc.