Extensive research and development has dialled up the changes for electronic labelling, meaning today’s Brother devices boast Bluetooth compatibility, AirPrint capability and Apple MFi certification - made for iPod, made for iPhone, and made for iPad.
It’s a far cry from Brother’s first handheld electronic labelling machine brought to market in 1988 - the classic PT-6. With a simple grey finish, labels generated with a dial function and just one font - the machine is a retro classic by current labelling standards.
Almost 30 years on, and today’s electronic labelling landscape reflects the need for our devices to talk to technology in order to create smooth, seamless, experiences with impressive design functionality and a suite of font options.
Labelling devices need to be as smart as our smartphones. Labels need to be able to be designed with professionality, choice and quality resolution. Devices need to look good, with stylish aesthetics that show synchronicity with the sleek laptops, tablets and televisions of our time.
This raft of attributes is reflected beautifully in Brother’s latest labeller to market, the QL-800 label printer. It comes complete with smooth contours, gloss finish and the ability to print labels in black and red as its key proposition.
Stylish - that’s a yes. Innovation - that’s for sure. A “world first” box is even checked too. As the QL-800 launched in January 2017, it became the world’s first two colour direct thermal label printer developed for home and office use.
Constant innovation in Brother’s technology has unlocked level after level of labelling functionality. Today, its P-touch labelling machines and QL label printers have a loyal following of advocates across the world and are labelling products loved by those who like to keep things well organised.
Let’s take a look at some technological highlights in electronic labelling and show the stepping stones of innovation since the Classic PT-6 was launched in the late 80s.
1988: Classic PT-6With dial functionality and laminated tapes.
1992: PT-8000Full size computer keyboard and new longer tape up to 24mm in width – ideal for industrial use.
1994: P-touch PCBrother’s first dedicated label machine where the label design could be undertaken on a computer.
2004: QL-550The only office label printer with integrated automatic cutter that could print on continuous labels – making labelling up to one metre a possibility.
2005: QL-650TDFirst Brother labelling machine that can be used without a computer, making standalone labelling a possibility. Labels can be saved in the memory locations, including adding date and time stamp to the label.
2008: QL-580NNetwork capability introduced to make workgroup label printing possible.
2010: QL-700 seriesNew simpler way to design labels, using built in P-touch Editor Lite software, with no installation required. The QL-710W followed as the first wireless label printer from Brother.
2012: PT-P750WWireless capability and Near Field Communications compatible Android smartphone using Brother’s iPrint&Label app. This can be done by simply tapping their smartphone on the labelling machine’s NFC reader.
2017: QL-800 seriesBlack and red labelling is possible. Built in label design programme P-touch Editor Lite, included. The QL-820NWB includes memory increase up to 6MB and more than 250 different labels. The series includes network connectivity and wireless options. Bluetooth capability allows linking to smartphones and tablets plus the use of Brother’s iPrint&Label app. The series holds Apple MFi certification. The range also utilises easy loading consumables and can automatically detect the label type inserted, which makes it possibly the smartest labelling line up from Brother yet.
It’s an impressive timeline of technology, one that demonstrates how Brother has consistently innovated in order to meet consumer need. It has introduced smooth, seamless hassle-free labelling that helps cut down chaos and replace it with the natural order of things.
That’s Brother illustrating that it is made for Innovation.