Interview: Increase printer availability

Ready when you are


Printers are no longer just printers, they are intelligent multifunctional systems and should be just as consistently operational as your laptop or smartphone. Another thing they have in common is that if your laptop isn't working properly, you don't always have to call in IT support; you can often get help remotely. Find out here how this can also be done with your printer.

When you want to print, the toner is empty and no colleague has ordered a new one. If it's not the toner, there may be a malfunction that you can't precisely identify and describe yourself. The result is the same in both cases: you cannot work as you would like. How wonderful would it be to find your printer always ready for use, with all fault messages and toner replenishments automated? No problem with Konica Minolta Remote Services, which keeps your printers running optimally 24/7. Our colleague Benjamin Licht, Product Manager Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe, explains what exactly is behind it.

Benjamin, what exactly is meant by Remote Services?

Benjamin: With Remote Services, we ensure the productivity and reliability of our printing systems - and save manual effort and thus valuable time on the part of our customers. Remote services are made up of two components. We receive a message automatically and in real time if, for example, a new toner cartridge is needed soon or a malfunction occurs. We also receive regular meter readings so that we can bill the print volume according to consumption. The customer does not need to report all this by e-mail or web questionnaire. This remote monitoring enables us to keep an eye on the printing system around the clock and throughout the year.
Remote maintenance is also covered. Remote access to a printing system, e.g. to make settings, perform firmware updates or instruct the user standing in front of the printing system from a distance are part of our remote management. 

That is, if someone is standing at a Konica Minolta office printer, the person can expect to be able to start directly with their project?

Benjamin:  Yes, that is correct. With Remote Services, we strengthen the reliability of our printers and multifunction systems. As input and output systems for information and documents, they are as much a part of our everyday work as a laptop or telephone. They have to be up and running, otherwise we can't work.
Remote monitoring provides us with information on toner requirements and malfunctions automatically and without any action on the part of the user. In everyday office life, this means that a new toner cartridge is delivered before the old one is empty and a fault is reported - and ideally rectified - before a user notices it.

quotation marks

The goal is always to keep the printing system fully operational.

Benjamin Licht

Product Manager Konica Minolta Business Solutions Europe

Isn't it better to have a service technician physically on site?

Benjamin: It will certainly still be necessary in the future for a service technician to be physically on site in certain cases. He will also have to be there when the printing system is being serviced or a component has to be replaced. We continue to guarantee these tasks with our comprehensive field organization.

In many cases, questions and problems can be responded to more quickly via remote maintenance and access to the printing system can be organized more easily in terms of time. Pre-qualifying a problem remotely can also support a necessary on-site visit.
In the end, the goal is always to have the printing system fully operational as quickly as possible.

Award for Serviceability & Support

For the second time we receive the BLI PaceSetter Award for Serviceability and Support from 2020-2021 in Western Europe, awarded by Keypoint Intelligence. Our innovative tools, programs and training enable our customers to efficiently and qualitatively maintain products and services remotely, e.g. through online training or support with remote tools.
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How does remote maintenance work?

Benjamin: That varies somewhat from case to case. A Konica Minolta technician connects remotely to the printing system, for example, to make settings or apply a firmware update. Depending on the scenario, he/she can do this flexibly outside of the customer's business hours, for example, or after explicit confirmation from a user at the printing system.
Under certain circumstances, it may not be sufficient for a technician to "look inside the machine", but must see the printing system "from the outside". In such cases, we use our innovative and in-house developed remote support technology, which allows us to immediately see what he or she sees via the user's smartphone or tablet, if necessary. The technician can provide instructions to the user via voice instructions and various pointing and drawing tools on the smartdevice display. Thus, if necessary, the user can fix a problem him- or herself, assist with pre-qualification, or be instructed for operation. This technology has immense advantages over a purely telephone-based conversation, because "a picture is worth a thousand words" - and in our case, it's even a live video.

To summarize: What benefits does Konica Minolta offer with its Remote Services?

Benjamin: The customer will use our printers and multifunctional systems in his daily work as a reliable system for document and information processes – and Konica Minolta takes care of the rest, a carefree package, so to say.
And by the way, together we reduce the burden on the environment with every on-site visit that is saved.