International POS printer manufacturer, Star Micronics, has announced today its plans for the launch to the Middle East region of its low cost, high speed (180mm per second) TSP1000 thermal printer and its new generation of communicating visual card systems, the TCP400, at Gitex 05 (25-29th September 2005, Dubai World Trade Centre). The company will also be launching a major new addition to its product range.

Initially developed as a lottery ticket printer, the TSP1000 is also being met with considerable enthusiasm in the kitchen and ticketing markets. The key feature for many customers is the TSP1000s unique ticket stacker. Accommodating up to 30 tickets, the stacker makes the TSP1000 ideal for cinemas, theatres and entertainment parks issuing for group and multiple bookings and to stack restaurant orders in kitchens. Within the kitchen environment, for example, the stacker sensor can be defined by software to print one ticket at a time in order to maintain table priority. Developed to ultimately issue tickets of up to 0.15mm/150gsm in thickness, the TSP1000 can also cater for a diversity of other ticketing environments including airlines, where the established alternatives are considerably more expensive.

In addition, the TSP1000 incorporates paper rolls of up to 180mm diameter more than twice that of its nearest rival a feature that appeals to businesses with high customer throughput, giving the need for far fewer paper roll changes.

The TSP1000s advanced features are further complemented by Star Micronics minimum design specifications for Drop-In & Print paper loading and assured performance longevity. The company believes that the products market success is further assured by its low price and small footprint, both of which compare favourably with any would-be competitors.

Available to customers in the traditional options of charcoal grey and Star White, the TSP1000 can also be supplied in a new two-tone colour combination of red and Star white.

The TCP400, the new generation of visual card systems, has been specifically designed for the loyalty, membership, electronic purse and security/ID sectors as well as some specialist ticketing applications, such as re-usable airline tickets and boarding passes. The systems utilise a credit-card style of re-writable card from 0.06 to 0.84 microns thick. Developed to be re-written to up to 500 times, the TCP400s cards can also be updated with sophisticated graphics as well as text within just a few seconds. The TCP400 is supplied with a USB interface as standard, but is also available with a RS232C serial alternative, if required. A wireless version is planned for the latter part of 2005.

Annette Tarlton, marketing manager EMEA for Star Micronics, commented on the new introduction, This generation of visual cards provides us with access into a multitude of different market sectors, given its unrivalled application and design versatility. Offering card issuers the ability to communicate updated messages directly to card carriers at POS has secured Star Micronics considerable presence in the card system market and this latest solution will underscore our leading position.

An integral feature, the TCP400 will be available with a LinuxTM and WindowsTM based S.D.K. to afford simple, cost-effective installation in OS, 98, ME, NT, 2000 and XP operating platforms. Available in either packaged or OEM mechanism formats, the compact (119mm width x 270mm depth x 132.5mm height) TCP400 has been developed with a clamshell design to allow for easy mechanism access and maintenance, and features an indicator alerting operators when to clean the writing heads to allow for highest resolution print outs.

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