Re: Do printers really need to be connected to the internet?
They probably aren't, directly, but it seems that all manufacturers of kit these days want their box to phone home. Perhaps only on installation but often to keep in contact either all the time or periodically. So they talk upnp to the router and set up a little hole. I've had to put a firewall rule in to my (home-brew router) to stop my printer phoning back to HP.
I've recently bought a z-wave controller and that set up a ssh session to a cloud server to provide remote access from android/iPhone apps. No thanks. I'll do the remote access myself, so that ssh session now doesn't get started.
Supposedly to manage a Netgear WiFi extender I should log into it via some name that resolves to a cloud server somewhere and it will automagically log me on to the device. Sod that for a game of soldiers, I've set up to log on directly.
Now, I can sort this stuff, but most consumers can't. I do wonder what the motivation is here. Do the manufacturers want to make it easier for Joe Public, or is this a golden opportunity to collect usage data which can then be sold on? Either way, it's a mess.