Epson, you're dead to me

I’m really disappointed in Epson these days. Mac users have always been second-class Epson citizens despite buying a lot of high-end Epson printers and oceans of ink, but now they’ve left us out in the cold with Snow Leopard’s release.

Don’t get me wrong — their hardware is top notch. Their drivers and tech support, not so much. I won’t bore you with the details of my tech support encounter over the purple streaks my prints had after switching from Windows 98 to Windows 2000. It dragged on for several months and I ended up fixing it myself. My experience with Epson went from bad to worse when I switched to the Mac.

In the hours and days after Snow Leopard was released to the public (a month early), a lot of developers were scrambling to update their products to fix compatibility issues. That’s understandable. Canon and HP both had updated printer drivers posted the following day or two. Granted, Epson now has a Snow Leopard compatibility page on their support web site, but it only covers their newest, most expensive printers. The Stylus Photo 2200 is still in wide use despite being discontinued a few years ago. Unfortunately, the most recent Mac driver for the 2200 is more than three years old and doesn’t even appear to be a Universal Binary. Okay, I’ll go a little farther and say that it’s crap. It is no secret that the real money is in continuing ink sales, not the initial printer sale, so why wouldn’t Epson want to keep 2200 users happy and buying ink?

So here is the bottom line: Epson, I’m tired of you treating me and my fellow Mac users like dirt instead of like valued customers. I shoot with Canon camera equipment — if you don’t turn your corporate attitude about Macintosh users around in a hurry, I’m switching back to Canon printers. As the president of a photography club in the fourth-largest city in the United States, people frequently ask me for advice about printer purchases. I have usually recommended Epson printers in response to those questions. No more. As I said above, your hardware is top notch. But what good is top notch hardware if you don’t have the software to drive it?
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