Prints from a prototype shown last week weren’t as vividly colored as regular minilab prints, but Lauer said the technology is still being tweaked.
Label printers with Memjet’s heads are already in use. This means that a company such as FedEx Corp., for example, which prints millions of barcode labels every day, could now add color to them, perhaps for its logo or other information that should stand out, Lauer said.
The technology also could be used in cash registers, which would let retailers print out coupons in color on receipts. However, the 8.5-inch wide Memjet head is too broad for a cash register, so Memjet would have to make a smaller one.
One customer, Lauer said, uses the label printer to print tens of thousands of personally addressed direct-mail envelopes every day, without needing to pre-print the color with standard, high-volume “offset” printing.
“Yes, you can now get your junk mail in color,” Lauer said.