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Maximizing the Image Life of Direct Thermal Receipts and Wristbands

Posted March 22, 2012

Direct thermal printing dates back to the 1960s and was originally designed for copiers and fax machines that utilize chemically coated paper. It has since been transformed into a highly successful print technology for bar coding.

Direct thermal media is essentially a self-contained printing system. It is manufactured by applying surface coatings to the media with a chemical formula that includes colorless dyes and developers. When the media goes through a thermal printer, heat (thermal energy) from the thermal printhead causes the dye and developer to activate and form a high-definition image. The thermal printhead consists of many heating elements distributed along its printing width. Each element is electronically controlled to deliver the correct amount of energy to an exact location for an exact amount of time. Those individual elements are strobed by the printer to form the final image—text, graphics, and bar codes. Fully saturating or imaging direct thermal chemistry is key to obtaining the most durable direct thermal image. Producing a less than fully saturated image will reduce the image life when exposed to various contaminants or environmental conditions.

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A799 Collection Hits High Fashion

Posted March 20, 2012

Challenge

When a high-fashion designer and retailer, best known for its designer handbags and accessories decided to replace its receipt printing laser printers, they needed a thermal receipt printer that was capable of doing justice to their famous designer image. The challenge was finding a thermal printer capable of printing the company logo to their satisfaction.

Scenario

The switch from laser to thermal printing in any environment involves not only a financial decision but also operational considerations. A combined need to reduce printing costs, as well as the desire to reduce printer downtime and increase workspace, drove this high-end retailer to seek an alternate solution to their current laser printer setup. Thermal printers require no toner and have a footprint of up to three times smaller than that of a desktop laser printer.

Once the retailer made the decision to convert to thermal receipt printing technology, the next step was to decide which manufacturer could provide the best solution for their particular application. The overriding factor in their final decision would be the printer’s capability of accurately reproducing the designer’s logo on the receipt. Although simple in design, the thin lines of text and levels of grayscale in the logo required precision manipulation of the logo artwork and customized support to ensure the level of print quality would meet the designer’s standards

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How POS Receipts Build Sales And Loyalty

Posted March 19, 2012

The coupon revival continues, and the source of those most often redeemed might surprise you.

According to the Annual Topline U.S. CPG Coupon Facts Report for Year-end 2010, released by NCH Marketing Services, Inc., marketers distributed 332 billion coupons for consumer packaged goods last year, marking the largest singleyear distribution of coupons ever recorded in the United States. Those coupons redeemed totalled $3.7 billion in savings for consumers. Fueled by frugal recession-weary shoppers, coupon usage has climbed from 63.6% in 2007 to 78.3% in 2010, according to NCH.

Most of those coupons distributed — a full 90% — came in the form of free-standing inserts, according to Inmar, the company that handles the bulk of coupon processing in the U.S. But retail marketers take note — that’s not where the leading growth in redeemed coupons lies.
Checkout coupon redemption rates grew 39% in 2010, faster than freestanding insert coupons, digital promotions, shelf-pad, and in-ad coupon offers. Indeed, coupons printed on receipts enjoy a redemption rate that’s three times higher than that of direct mail and newspaper circular-based receipts. Bob Carter, president of promotion services for Inmar, says the data his company is gathering tells us that consumers are still looking for deals, but appear to be less motivated to seek out and redeem out-of-store offers.

The ability to leverage receipts to communicate brand awareness, promotions, coupon offers, and other forms of customer engagement is not new. Consumers’ enthusiastic return to interest in that messaging certainly is.

The consumers who are most enthusiastic about coupon redemption might surprise you as well. Assumption might lead you to believe that the lowest income households are the heaviest coupon users, when in fact it’s your best customers who seek them out and cash them in. Coupon usage in 2010 was dominated by households with incomes greater than $70,000, with 38% of what Inmar labels “super heavy” users and 41% of “enthusiasts” coming from that demographic. Households with income of more than $100,000 drove coupon growth in 2009.

Finally, lest you think the coupon craze has come and gone, the latest figures show coupon redemption was up 4% in the second quarter of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010.

As in-store couponing goes, nothing beats the receipt. Modern, powerful software tools allow endless and easy customization of designs and parameters on receipts, such as targeted offers to customers who meet specifi c purchase thresholds. Chain-store retailers can even create store-specifi c messaging and offers, enabling location based messaging that’s custom-fi t for the demographics of their consumers.

The writing is on the wall — if you’re not promoting special offers on your register tape, you’re missing a powerful opportunity to delight customers and drive repeat traffic.

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Star TSP100 Receipt Printer Certified with Parks and Recreation Management Software

Posted February 28, 2012

Star Micronics, a leading manufacturer of point of service printers, has announced that their TSP100 receipt printer is certified to seamlessly integrate with RecTrac software. RecTrac is a Parks and Recreation Management Software that has a global sales single receipt processing capability, which allows you to process any number of transactions using any combination of RecTrac modules and produce a single receipt.

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Star SM-T300 Ruggedized Portable Receipt Printer Now Available Without Magnetic Stripe Reader

Posted February 7, 2012

Star Micronics is proud to announce an additional version of its popular, ruggedized SM-T300 portable receipt printer.

In many applications where a rugged portable printer is needed, credit card reading is not. The latest version of the SM-T300 series, the SM-T300-DW50, ships sans a magnetic stripe reader.

Dust protected and splash-resistant (IP54 Certified), the SM-T300 is ideal for outside field workers requiring handhelds to seamlessly print to a durable portable printer. Its rugged and splash proof design coupled with a long battery life makes the SM-T300 a welcomed option for applications in harsh outdoor environments, such as service & delivery, public safety and utilities.

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Hamleys Toy Store Selects the Star TSP100 Receipt Printer for Point of Sale

Posted January 26, 2012

Hamleys has been in the toy business since 1760, and remains the world’s most famous toy store. The flagship store on Regent Street in London has 7 floors packed full of toys and games.

Hamleys has recently taken the decision to upgrade to the DigiPoS Retail Blade PoS system and Star TSP100 futurePRNT thermal printer from international printer manufacturer Star Micronics.

The TSP100 futurePRNT offers high speed printing, exceptional print quality and a range of unique features including a number of software tools. These enable the overall appearance of receipts to be easily modified and customers to be effectively targeted through the addition of relevant vouchers. Having selected the TSP100 Powered USB model Hamleys further benefits from improved cable management and uninterrupted power supply on both the PC and the printer thus protecting all transactions.

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Supermarket Chain Feeds Sales With Star Receipt Printers

Posted November 30, 2011

Shrinking margins, growing competition, and increased consumer demand for a better in-store experience rank among the many challenges faced by retailers these days. The good news: technology—including printers from Star Micronics–can play a pivotal role in overcoming these obstacles and attaining key goals.

That’s what one independent supermarket chain based in the Northeastern U.S. discovered when it deployed 29 kiosks comprised of Star Micronics’ TSP847U thermal printers, 37-inch TekPanel kiosk heads, and Custom Laser, Inc. Powder Coated Steel Kiosk Stands in all 16 of its stores and at corporate headquarters. The kiosks run the ShoptoCook software application, which supplied and implemented the bundled solution.

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New Star Receipt Printer Drivers Allow Printing from iOS and Android Devices

Posted May 31, 2011

Star Micronics America has announced the availability of iOS and Android drivers for all of its receipt printers.

The drivers allow end-users to utilize Star Micronics printers in tandem with Apple iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone and Android devices to generate receipts and perform related functions in retail and restaurant environments.

“Star Micronics has always been committed to ensuring that its solution provider partners and, in turn, their retailer and hospitality customers, remain at the cutting edge in terms of implementing applications that reflect changing market trends,” said Christophe Naasz, director of marketing at Star Micronics America. “Today, an increasing number of retailers and restaurateurs are migrating to mobile POS applications to enhance their own operating efficiencies as well as to meet consumers’ heightened demand for immediate service and rapid transaction processing. The availability of iOS and Android drivers on Star Micronics printers will give solution providers the added flexibility to satisfy requests for wireless POS software that may be used to keep up with the trends and leverage the power of these popular hand-held units.”

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Epson TM-H6000 Printer Selected Southeastern Data Cooperative Selects to Support Over 200 Utility Companies

Posted May 10, 2011

Receipt Printer with Integrated Check and ID Scanning Ideally-Suited for Billing Applications

Epson, a leading supplier of value-added Point of Sale (POS) solutions, announced that Southeastern Data Cooperative (SEDC), a provider of hardware and software solutions to utility companies, has selected the Epson TM-H6000 multifunction printer with digital check imaging and ID scanning as part of its suite of billing, accounting and capital credit software platform to support over 200 utility customers. Epson’s TM-H6000 is the only POS printer with both integrated check reader and ID scanner, which allows utility companies to implement electronic check conversion (ECC) and capture ID images at the point of presentment, lowering check handling costs and reducing fraud and liability. Sixty of SEDC’s 215 member customers have been updated with the new hardware, and the remaining 155 customers are scheduled to roll out in the coming months.

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Epson Introduces TM-H6000IV Multifunction Receipt Printer

Posted January 10, 2011

Fastest Check Processing and Most Energy Efficient In Its Class, Ideal for High-Volume Retailers

Today at the National Retail Federation (NRF) 100th Annual Convention & Expo, Epson introduced the TM-H6000IV – a multifunction POS printer ideally suited for retail and supermarkets looking to speed checkout lanes, increase productivity and save on energy costs. With best-in-class reliability, forms handling, the industry’s fastest check processing and the fastest print speeds in its class, up to 50% faster than the prior model, the TM-H6000IV is ideally suited for retailers looking for fast-moving checkout lanes. In addition, the TM-H6000IV is the industry’s first ENERGY STAR® qualified hybrid printer, has the lowest power consumption in its class, is up to 84% more energy efficient than its tested competitors1, and has print options that can reduce receipt paper usage over 25%.

TM-H6000IV Features and Benefits

Designed with even greater reliability and a smaller footprint than the previous model, Epson’s new TM-TH6000IV offers the following features and benefits:

  • Transaction Speed
    With printing up to 300mm/second, the TM-H0000IV is 50% faster than the TM-H6000III and offers the fastest print speeds in its class as well as the industry’s fastest check processing.

  • Reliability
    With an MCBF of 96 million lines the TM-H6000IV is the most reliable in its class and all components are designed to last the lifetime of the printer.

  • MICR Accuracy
    Epson’s TM-H6000IV MICR leads the industry with over 99.9% accuracy and reads more of the check surface than the prior model, reducing the number of unreadable checks.

  • Environmental Features
    The TM-H6000IV is ENERGY STAR qualified, has the lowest power consumption in its class and offers print options that reduce receipt paper usage over 25%.

  • Easy System Integration
    With Epson’s advanced Connect-It® interface modules, the TM-H6000IV is compatible with the latest systems and many legacy systems. The TM-H6000IV comes with dual interfaces (a built-in USB and one additional interface) to ensure easy integration.

  • Warranty and Availability
    Backed by world-class service and support programs and a two-year warranty, the TM-H6000IV is ideally suited for fast, high-performance retail printing applications and will be available Q1 2011.

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