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Epson crams wide-format printing into a compact, voice-activated photo printer


Wide-format printers are notoriously big and pricey, but the Epson Expression Photo XP-970 Small-in-One printer delivers desktop-friendly borderless prints. The photo printer spits out prints up to 11 x 17 from the touchscreen controls or a computer — or you can ask Alexa, Google, or Siri to print for you.

The Small-In-One series designates Epson’s compact printers that still mix in copying and scanning capabilities. Designed for photos, the XP-970 uses six Claria Photo HD type ink cartridges for better transitions and gradations, as well as better skin tones, the company says. The printer accommodates specialty paper and can also print directly on CDs and DVDs for photographers still kicking it old school.

For smaller 4 x 6 prints, the printer can send out the finished photo in about 11 seconds using the fastest settings.

The 4.3-inch touchscreen and built-in SD card and USB slot allow photographers to print without connecting to a PC. The printer even builds in editing tools, including red-eye removal and restoration tools for old or damaged photos. Images can then be saved to the cloud. Computers, smartphones, and tablets can send images and documents wirelessly using Wi-Fi Direct, which doesn’t require a router.

Photographers with a smart home assistant can connect the printer for a handful of voice-automated tasks. The voice-activated options vary by the smart home system paired with the printer, but users can ask Alexa or Google to print out favorite recipes, to-do lists, and other documents. Siri will print out photos from an iOS device, start a scan, or check ink levels.

The printer takes up about 18.9 inches of desk space on the longest side when in the storage position, needing as much as 26.3 inches when sending out prints.

“For the avid photo, creative, or DIY enthusiast, a high-performance printer packed with innovative and convenient features is crucial. The Expression Photo XP-970 is an affordable, versatile printer that lets users easily and quickly produce high-quality prints from anywhere in the home,” said Stevi Sterns, Epson America associate product manager.

The Epson Expression Photo XP-970 Small-In-One is available beginning today at a retail price of about $300.

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