Wednesday, June 4, 2008
I was asked to try out the Presto service with the HP printing mailbox. Now, this is not something I would ever use, BUT it is absolutely something my grandma or aunt would use, so I agreed. Let me explain what this is. Presto is a service that works with the HP printing mailbox. It enables the user to receive email (text and images) without a computer. It just uses your phone line to dial out in order to receive emails. Presto explains it better than I can HERE.
I don't know about you, but my aunt and my grandma aren't exactly tech savvy. They don't have a computer, don't have a need for one, and don't have a desire to learn how to use one. But they do like keeping in touch with friends and family. And I have to admit that I'm not so great at the lost art of correspondence. I can't remember the last time I actually wrote a letter. I'm much more likely to keep in touch with relatives and friends via email. This enables people like me to keep in touch with people like them.
When I got my HP printing mailbox, I took it to my aunt's house so she could try it out. It's basically a printer that connects to your phone line. It only took a couple minutes to set it up - plug it in, plop the ink cartridge in, put some paper in, voila!
Next I set up an account for her online (on my computer). Never fear - if a person without a computer buys this to receive email, they can still set up an account over the phone. I just figured it would be easiest for me to do it online. It only took a few minutes and I was able to set up her email address, choose the font size of my aunt's emails, and the time(s) the machine would dial out to retrieve emails. You can have the machine dial out at midnight every night for email messages, for example, or you could set it to dial out a few times a day, or whatever's convenient for you.
As the account manager, I can change the settings any time, I get alerts if the ink is running low, and I can add email addresses to her address book. (That's a cool feature too. She can only receive email from addresses that are on her Friends List to prevent spam and junk mail.)
I really do think this is a cool service for mom and dad or grandma and grandpa, especially if they live out of town. You can send them pictures from Johnny's baseball game, Sarah's ballet recital, or your new bundle of joy. You can send email updates, invitations to parties and get-togethers, or just a note to say you're thinking about them. Everyone loves to get mail, right? Instead of getting grandma a computer and paying for internet service that she wouldn't really use, this is a less expensive alternative that will still enable her to receive email and pictures from you and other friends and relatives. The HP printing mailbox is on sale now for $99.99 and the service is just $9.99 a month. Go HERE and click "view demo" to see a video about this service.
The only drawback that I could find is that the Presto user can't send email out. They can receive letters and beautiful, color photos, but they can't respond via email. Of course, if you've gotten the HP printing mailbox and Presto service for grandma and grandpa who have never used a computer, chances are they wouldn't be interested in replying via email anyway. They're more likely to pick up the phone to thank you for sending them a letter and pictures of their little grandchildren (great grandbabies).
What an awesome idea for Father's Day for dad or grandpa - a way for him to get mail and photos without a computer! And right now, in time for Father's Day, you can get $50 OFF the price of the HP printing mailbox!!! Just go HERE for the discount! And because my readers are so awesome, Presto is offering one lucky winner a FREE unit and 3 FREE months of Presto service! Just leave me a comment here and I'll choose a random winner on June 10th.
* Yes, I know that many senior citizens own computers and are tech savvy. I'm not saying that grandparents aren't capable of working a computer. This is a great product/service for individuals who don't own a computer because they don't want one, can't afford one, or are afraid of them and don't want to learn how to use one.
Posted by Dawn at 11:39 PM