ZEBRA TECHNOLOGIES INTRODUCES INDUSTRY FIRST THERMAL LABEL PRINTERS TO SUPPORT UNICODE FOR mySAP BUSINESS SUITE

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Zebra Technologies today announces it has made multi-language label printing easier for mySAP Business Suite users by offering support for Unicode (UTF-8) on eight different models of its bar code label printers. Using a Unicode-enabled Zebra printer, users of SAP solutions can create and print labels that contain information in many languages and use them in different regions of the world. Zebra is the first company to offer this support in a thermal bar code label printer.

Unicode is a code page that converts numeric codes into characters for printing or display. Most traditional code page encoding systems, including ASCII, support 256 characters or fewer. Unicode can support more than 65,000 characters from all major languages, including Arabic, Asian, and other complex non-Western languages that can be challenging to print. Without Unicode, organizations with international label printing needs must purchase multiple font packages, additional labeling software, and printers with language-specific codepages to output all required language characters. Zebra, a global leader in delivering on-demand printing solutions for business improvement, is the only known thermal bar code label printer manufacturer to ship a preloaded, printer-resident Unicode-addressable font that supports many major languages throughout the world.

"mySAP Business Suite users will find great value in Zebra's Unicode solution because it removes redundant font, codepage and label format redevelopment costs from international bar code label printing operations," said Dave Crist, vice president of sales for Zebra Technologies. "This innovation will support our customers as they expand globally by ensuring their printing systems can grow with them."

mySAP Business Suite supports Unicode UTF-8 printing output from both SAPscript and Smart Forms, its form design tool. This enables users to create and print bar code label formats on any Unicode-enabled Zebra printer without needing to switch codepages at either the printer or the server for each language. Eliminating the need to custom design labels for each region of the world and to configure printers for each required language significantly reduces implementation time, complexity and cost for companies that need to print multiple languages.

"Zebra's printer support of Unicode for mySAP Business Suite provides a great advantage for us, especially for our eastern European and Russian activities," said Paul Bruck, managing director for Austrian-based Bruck Technologies. "Without Unicode we would have needed weeks for developing a custom solution around traditional codepages."

As part of an SAP solution, Zebra printers come preloaded with the necessary firmware and font required to print all major European and Middle Eastern languages for printers shipped to customers in those regions. Support is also available for Zebra customers in other regions of the world. Zebra offers Unicode as a free option available for all new XiIIIPlus series, 105SL, 110PAX4, Z4MPlus and Z6MPlus printers. Optional font packs can be purchased for Asia-Pacific (APAC) languages, containing characters for most South Asian languages and specialized characters for traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese, Japanese or Korean.

"As an SAP Partner for mobile systems, we highly recognized the Unicode tool as a less cost intensive, and easy and fast implementation into mySAP Business Suite," said Olav Reimers, managing director of Austrian-based Integer Solutions. "Instead of developing a tailor-made solution with existing code pages, we were able to deliver an 'out-of-the-box' tool. We are now able to supply a perfect one-stop solution to our customers."

Zebra has been an SAP Software Partner with certified integrations of its printing solutions since 1999, and worked closely with SAP to provide bar code functionality directly from mySAP Business Suite as part of a comprehensive and easy-to-use forms, reports, and label design tool.

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