Printers are getting faster and more functionalities every year. The question is are they build better? Back in the days (circa 1980s) the dot matrix printers would last 5, 10, or even more than 15 years.
In the beginning
When laser printers came out, they printed nice and sharp text but cost a lot more than the inkjets. These days the cost between a good inkjet and laser are not too much. Laser printers prints nice crisp text quickly but can't match the picture quality of inkjets. Previously only the high end laser printers have the scanner and fax capabilities, now even the cheap Lexmark that can be purchased for about $60 have those features.
Aaah, the good old days
Was cleaning out my big storage this weekend and found my first inkjet printer from Canon, which was the Bubblejet 4000. Plugged it to a wall and it still prints even after not using it for about 10 years. Still have a few extra ink cartridges and will use it for a backup. Brings back sweet memories of simplier times. My 3rd Epson Workforce 810 series All-in-one printer is printing garbage and I barely got it for about 9 months. Just finished printing a color flyer on it and a few ink spots on a few places even after a few tries.
Today's disposable printers
My conclusion is that there really is not much difference between Laser and inkjet printers, the right kind is based on what needs to do, and preference in the company and features because in the end these machines break down so easy and often. It seems that the newer printers are mass produce in flimsy materials that it seems to break down quickly and need a replacement every 2 years. Or could it be by design? In many cases, once the ink runs out, it might be cheaper to just buy a new printer than to buy new sets of inks.