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Inkjet printing is a type of computer printing that recreates a digital image by propelling droplets of ink onto paper, plastic, or other substrates. Inkjet printers are the most commonly used type of printer, and range from small inexpensive consumer models to very large professional machines that can cost tens of thousands of dollars, or more. The concept of inkjet printing originated in the 19th century, and the technology was first extensively developed in the early 1950s. Starting in the late 1970s inkjet printers that could reproduce digital images generated by computers were developed, mainly by Epson, Hewlett-Packard (HP), and Canon. In the worldwide consumer market, four manufacturers account for the majority of inkjet printer sales: Canon, HP, Epson, and Lexmark, a 1991 spin-off from IBM. The emerging ink jet material deposition market also uses inkjet technologies, typically printheads using piezoelectric crystals, to deposit materials directly on substrates. There are two main technologies in use in contemporary inkjet printers: continuous (CIJ) and Drop-on-demand (DOD). Another emerging printing technology is EHD. Liquids can be printed at nanoscale by pyro-EHD.

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