New Seiko Instruments Embedded Thermal Printers Help Mobile Devices Get Smaller, Faster, and More Reliable

Torrance, CA, January 27, 2009 – Seiko Instruments USA Inc. (SIU) Thermal Printer Division, http://www.siiprinters.com, a globally recognized leader in thermal printer technology, today introduced a new generation of 2″ and 3″ low-voltage direct thermal printer mechanisms for mobile devices. The LTPD and CAPD models deliver a huge range of design advancements. New features include reduced footprint, improved print speed, better reliability, and easier integration. For hardware engineers designing point-of-sale (POS) terminals, portable medical equipment, and mobile printers, the new mechanisms free critical design real estate, accelerate transaction performance, and lower end-user downtime and operating costs.

“Our engineers take pride in helping make our customer’s products more competitive,” said Kaz Onishi, Vice President and General Manager, Seiko Instruments USA. “The huge range of improvements in these new models demonstrates our commitment to developing small, fast, and exceptionally dependable solutions that can accelerate time to market for our OEM customers.”

The new LTPD and CAPD printer mechanisms are significantly smaller than preceding models, and incorporate new features that reduce mechanical real estate requirements in the OEM device. All mechanisms benefit from a new angled paper guide that shortens the distance between the printer and the paper roll, effectively reducing overall design depth. The flexible print circuit (FPC), connecting the mechanism to the PCB, is also redesigned with a smaller, 0.5mm pitch and a framed ground line that protects against electrostatic discharge, without extra wiring. And, fixing points are now housed within the footprint of each printer, enabling mechanisms to mount flush with the chassis of the OEM device.

Beyond reduction of the mechanism’s physical footprint, new features and configuration alternatives give design engineers greater integration flexibility and broader application suitability. For LTPD models, this includes a choice of horizontal and vertical mechanical orientation, with the mechanism motor mounted either behind or below the print head and platen roller. ASIC and interface board alternatives are available, along with USB, Serial, and Parallel interface support. All models support EZ-OP clamshell style and auto-loading paper replacement. This broad menu of configuration choices enables design engineers to quickly identify a suitable printer mechanism, speeding mobile device design schedules.

To ensure exceptional reliability in the field, all mechanisms are rated for a minimum 31 miles (50km) printed output and a minimum of 100 million pulses. A newly designed platen latch feature provides greater shock absorption by preventing unintended platen release on impact. For CAPD models, which combine the printer mechanism and auto-cutter, reliability gets a further boost with a new design that houses both components in a single rigid assembly. This enables more precise positioning of the cutter blade, avoiding cutter jams and improving reliability.

The new mechanisms also deliver improved print performance over previous models. The 2″ print width mechanisms now deliver 3.93″ per second (100 mm/sec) print speeds and 3″ print width models offer 3.15″ per second (80 mm/sec). For many mobile applications, better print speed means faster end-user transaction times, and this can improve perception of overall OEM device performance.

Printer drivers are available for Microsoft Windows XP, Microsoft Windows Vista, OPOS, and Linux operating systems.

About Seiko Instruments Inc.
As a member of The Seiko Group, Seiko Instruments (SII) represents a globally recognized brand, embodying innovative design and precision manufacturing excellence. Founded in 1937, SII manufactures and markets electronic components, thermal and specialty printers, consumer electronics, communication and network technology, scientific instrumentation, and precision manufacturing technology. SII has a global presence, with more than 13,000 employees worldwide.

Information about Seiko Instruments kiosk printers, mobile printers, portable desktop printers, and thermal printer mechanisms can be found at www.siiprinters.com.

Editorial Contact:
Nigel Hall
Parallel Prose
nhall@parallelprose.com
415.258.8440

Corporate Contact:
Thad Szymanski
Seiko Instruments USA Inc
Thad.Szymanski@seikoinstruments.com
310.517.7822

SII is a registered trademark of Seiko Instruments Inc.