Epson Ink Billing System Granted Patent

According to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, a patent coded 8489521 is granted to Seiko Epson Corporation (Tokyo, JP).

In this ink billing system, the inkjet printer uses optical sensors to measure the amount of ink remains in the ink cartridge, and calculates ink usage based on the remaining amount. A data processing device is connected to the inkjet printer to obtain data about the ink remained. The data relating to ink usage is sent over a network to a server in a service center. Then the billing module on the service center server references an ink billing table to determine the billing amount.

The printer manufacturer which provides multiple printers to a client enterprise can use such a system to invoice the client for the ink used, instead of simply selling and charging for the individual ink cartridges that are used in the printers. Clients using many printers will use a large amount of ink. This will make it very effective to provide other value-added services as part of the ink billing process.

The application for this patent was filed on November 2, 2006, and the authorization was published online on July 16, 2013.

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