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HP, studio developing color, tone technology

March 08, 2007|From Bloomberg News

Printer maker Hewlett-Packard Co. said Wednesday that it was developing technologies with DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. to improve the color consistency between print and digital images.

DreamColor has been added to some printers, and the companies are working to find ways to maintain tones when transferring images among cameras, computers, scanners and phones. The technology will be unveiled with a new printer, cameras and retail photo labs at a Photo Marketing Assn. conference in Las Vegas today, HP said.

Color management presents a challenge because hardware and software have varied ways of defining tones, making it difficult to predict how paper and ink will reproduce images. Palo Alto-based HP, which says it will increase sales at its printing unit as much as 6% this year, has stepped up product development to help extend its lead over challengers including Eastman Kodak Co., Xerox Corp. and Canon Inc.

"What they're trying to do is make the color experience simple," said Ed Leonard, chief technology officer for Glendale-based DreamWorks.

Adding the technology to some HP printers is part of a companywide effort to give customers a foolproof way to get predictable and accurate color output, said Vyomesh Joshi, who runs HP's printing and imaging group.

HP's goal is for DreamColor to work with computer monitors, graphics software, projectors and other devices so users can expect the same hues in photographs, brochures, digital presentations and other formats, he said.

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