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Zebra ZXP Series 8 Retransfer Card Printer Now Available

Posted November 11, 2009

Zebra ZXP printerNew Retransfer Card Printer—Superior, Photo-Like Images and Fastest Output

With Zebra’s new, high-innovation ZXP Series 8™ retransfer card printer, now create on-demand plastic identification cards with superior image quality that meets your brand expectations and quality requirements. And do it with best-in-class throughput—up to two to three times faster than competitors’ brands thanks to Zebra’s patent-pending simultaneous dual-sided image transfer process—for increased efficiency in your operations.

What’s more, our new ZMotif™ XML-based software includes management tools to simplify and speed printer integration and custom project implementation. And the printer’s modular design, with a range of add-now-or-later encoding options, matches the printer to your market, application and future needs.

Print on one or both sides, even on smart cards and other uneven card surfaces, with this best-in-class retransfer card printer.

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Pricing Accuracy Through Wireless Portable Printing

Posted November 11, 2009

Zebra Mobile PrintersChallenge
One of America’s largest retailers faces a daily challenge of maintaining accurate pricing of all merchandise across its entire chain of stores.

Further complicating the task is that the prices of more than 1000 products change every week, and up to five percent of the company’s inventory changes in any given month. As recently as the early 1990s, these changes were sent via fax or e-mail and were printed out by store managers at each location. A night shift was required to print out appropriate shelf labels, canvass the store to put these labels on corresponding shelves, and manually update pricing information in the store’s main computer for the check-out terminals. For the average store, these tasks required 20 employees to work six hours after the store closed.

“Every week we’d forfeit nearly 20 percent of our profits from each promotion through the cost of setting up for the sale,” recalled the chain’s operations manager. “Even after spending all of this time and money, human error was nearly out of control. The price of merchandise on the shelf frequently didn’t match the price at checkout. Our customers were frustrated, which was compromising customer loyalty and company reputation.”

To correct these problems, the retail chain adopted a corporate-wide pricing network with frame-relay host-to-store communication; a wireless, 2.4 GHz frequency-hopping LAN in every store, and network addressable Zebra® portable mobile printers to move the operation onto the floor.

Today, the company uses a team of price checkers to update prices and ensure that shelf labels match checkout counter prices. Each price checker is armed with a small handheld terminal capable of scanning existing shelf labels and a Zebra portable mobile printer that wirelessly connects both devices to the store’s network.

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Purchase Goods Anywhere: A Checkout Counter on the Move

Posted November 10, 2009

Zebra Cameo 3 Portable PrinterChallenge
During the holiday season, long checkout lines mean angry customers, decreased customer loyalty and lost sales. To keep customers in the holiday spirit, one of the nation’s largest discount chains tested a mobile checkout system to eliminate check-out lines, even during the busiest shopping days of the year.

“Even with all of our check-out counters open and our associates working as fast as possible, we still lost dozens of sales each day because people were scared away by the long lines during the holiday season,” commented one store manager. “We had to find a way to add check-out lines during our busiest time. Temporary mobile checkout was the only answer.”

For the store’s mobile checkout needs, the company turned to Zebra printers—the same brand of printer it relies on to label goods in its critical shipping and receiving operations. “We had used Zebra printers in a variety of logistics applications and they always worked flawlessly,” noted the company’s retail systems manager. “As a very public operation, our check-out operations system had to be fail-proof. Once we realized that Zebra offered a perfect retail solution, we never considered another vendor.”

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Clever Barcode Art on Japanese Packaging

Posted November 9, 2009 found some clever barcode art from Japanese firm

Check it out:

Japanese barcode art

Filed under: Barcode Fun

Motorola MC3100 Raises the Bar for Mid-range Mobile Computing with High-End Features

Posted November 9, 2009

Motorola MC3100Rugged, ergonomic mobile computer delivers new level of flexibility to businesses and government agencies

Motorola, Inc. announced the new MC3100 series of mobile computers – offering advanced computing power, industry-leading data capture options, enterprise-class motion sensing capabilities, and the most versatile form factor for mid-range mobile computing. The next-generation MC3100 provides enterprise mobility customers with a single, cost-effective in-premise solution for converged voice and data communications. In addition, the MC3100 leverages the ergonomic and lightweight rugged design of the category-leading MC3000, which has sold more than 750,000 units.

Designed for key-based and touch-screen applications inside the enterprise, such as price/stock management, inventory control, returns processing, shipping and receiving, baggage tracking and asset management, the Motorola MC3100 series of mobile computers is purpose-built to meet the demanding needs of diverse customer environments. With its robust features, the MC3100 mobile computer will help retailers, government agencies and distribution centers streamline business processes, improve employee productivity and enhance customer service and satisfaction.

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The Motorola MC9500-K mobile computer: Re-defining field mobility — even in demanding environments

Posted November 9, 2009

Motorola MC9500-K

The challenge: the cost of a disconnected field workforce

The productivity of your field workforce is tied directly to the bottom line of the business — regardless of whether your field teams interact directly with your customers or are focused on maintenance of crucial business infrastructure such as pipelines and cable or telephone networks. If workers do not have access to everything they need to complete the service call on the first visit — from maintenance history to the parts database and equipment schematics — the cost of doing business increases and future sales may be lost. If timely maintenance is not scheduled or multiple truck rolls are required to complete a work order, not only is the cost of day-to-day operations increased, but also infrastructure downtime increases the cost of your products and services — reducing margins and customer satisfaction.

In order to protect the health of your business, your field workers need to operate at peak efficiency — yet they are out in the field, disconnected from the customer and equipment information required to act in real time. Paper forms must be used to collect information for a wide variety of transactions — and that information must then be entered into the computer upon return to the office. As a result, time is inserted into your business processes, creating lag times that reduce service levels, employee productivity, cash flow and overall profitability. The need to touch the data twice increases the opportunity for costly errors that again impact business efficiency. In addition, field workers are forced to phone the office for simple information requests — such as pricing, inventory and invoice information, directions and more — again injecting time and cost into business processes. And if cell phones, standalone GPS devices, cameras and more are utilized out in the field, the enterprise must purchase and manage multiple mobile devices per worker, increasing costs — and life for the field becomes more complex, reducing productivity.

The solution: a real-time field workforce for real business advantage

Field mobility addresses these issues by eliminating the gap between the voice and data networks in the office and your workers out in the field — with just a single device. With an integrated voice and data mobile computer in hand, your workers have what it takes to achieve maximum productivity — the tools required to automate every day processes as well as act in real time. End-to-end field service cycle times are reduced — out in the field as well as for the tangential processes inside your four walls.

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Epson Introduces TM-T70 Space-Saving Thermal Receipt Printer

Posted November 4, 2009

Epson TM-T70Unique, Easy All-Front Access Enables Flexible Placement

Today Epson, a leading supplier of value-added Point of Sale (POS) solutions, announced the availability of its TM-T70 thermal receipt printer, the industry’s only all-front-access single-station printer. The printer is designed to fit under counters and in tight spaces in specialty retail, convenience store and food service applications. With front-facing controls, front paper loading and front receipt dispensing, the TM-T70 is also a perfect fit for many kiosk applications. Its small footprint and low height, along with flexible mounting options, make the TM-T70 an ideal choice where counter space is at a premium. Unlike traditional thermal printers, the TM-T70 does not require clearance for top or side-opening, enabling it to operate in exceptionally small spaces. The TM-T70 is the first of three new Epson thermal products to be introduced over the next two quarters, and is a key component of the company’s expanding thermal printer family.

“Our retail and food service customers expressed a need for a compact thermal printer designed to fit small spaces, like under a counter,” commented Mike Helm, Director of Sales and Marketing, Epson System Device Group. “We designed the TM-T70 with our customers in mind, with easy, all-front access and the same solid reliability they expect from Epson. There’s no other printer like it.”

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Star Micronics Helps Automate Credit Unions

Posted November 3, 2009

Star TSP800Overview:
A leading solution integrator for credit unions needed a high-speed, reliable printer to integrate into the company’s innovative solution. The company needed a transaction printer to add to the offering that was fast and flexible.

The Star Choice:
They chose the TSP800 from Star Micronics as the transaction printer. The TSP800 was selected primarily because of its fast print speed, as well as its small footprint, ease of use, flexibility and Star’s strong product support.

The TSP800 was selected after a thorough evaluation of thermal printers from various manufacturers.

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Seagull BarTender 9.2 Label Design and Printing Software Now Shipping

Posted November 2, 2009

Seagull BartenderIncludes Revision Control, new Print Utilities and more!

In addition to Windows 7 compatibility, Seagull BarTender version 9.2 introduces three new companion applications, support for scanners and cameras, new integration features and more.

“Librarian” Provides Secure Revision Control
The brand new BarTender Librarian lets large groups of users, designers and administrators cooperatively and securely manage the storage and revision of label formats and other files (Requires Enterprise Print Server edition).

  • Improve Security: Store label formats in a secure database instead of “loose” on your hard drive.
  • Manage Workflow: Specify custom states (such as “Proposed” and “Published”) and which users can make changes.
  • Track Revision History: Store each new document version with user comments and a timestamp.
  • Rollback: Revert to earlier versions when desired.

“Batch Maker” Lets You Combine Multiple Label Jobs
The new Batch Maker utility makes it easy to specify a list of multiple label formats to print as a single “batch.” Batches can be printed from within Batch Maker itself, as well as from BarTender, Print Station and Windows Explorer.

Commander Now Returns Status Response
Programs that control BarTender using the Commander middleware application can now receive back important status information, either by reading a TCP/IP port or a file.

“Print Station” Launches Print Jobs with a Single Mouse Click
The new BarTender “Print Station” utility gives non-technical users easy point-and-click label printing without ever having to see the inside of a label design program.

  • Incredibly Easy: To launch a print job, users simply click on the desired label format, Batch Maker job or BarTender XML script.
  • Optional Prompts: Fully supports BarTender’s optional pop-up “prompt” screens.
  • Full Screen Mode: Allows PCs to be used as dedicated print stations.

Scanner and Camera Support
As an alternative to importing existing files when adding graphics to your labels, BarTender can now acquire images directly from any TWAIN or WIA device. In addition to printing images as part of a label, you can take pictures of existing labels and use them as design templates when converting from legacy software packages.

Filed under: Product News

Bar Codes Help Celera Map Human Genome

Posted November 2, 2009

From Sampling to Sequencing, Bar Coding Helped Celera Discover First

For some companies, asset tracking is simply a way to save money by using bar code
to keep tabs on computers and other company equipment. But for Celera Genomics of Rockville, MD, using bar code labels to keep track of DNA samples and test results is an absolute necessity. Celera, the first company to sequence and map the human genome (the genetic blueprint of humanity), was managing procedures, critical machinery, raw materials, and data long before their scientific breakthrough.

“From the onset of our mission to genetically define ‘human,’ we realized that keeping tabs every step of the way was a must to ensure our results and validate our findings,” says Celera Genomics’ director of quality systems, Peter Amanatides. “Coming from a logistical background, I was familiar with the benefits of bar code printing and scanning. We decided to implement the technology here to drive our sequencing process and structure the procedures around it.”

Celera’s first challenge was to find a label that would withstand the unusual conditions of a gene-sequencing lab. The labels needed to be water- and chemical-resistant, heat- and cold-tolerant, and maintain visual and scanning readability while staying affixed to the plates and equipment.

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