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This robot from Zuta Labs may change the way you print

Ian Paul, | July 4, 2014
The future of portable printing is rolling slowly across a piece of A4 paper on a hot Thursday afternoon in Jerusalem's early summer. After what seems like an eternity compared to an inkjet device, the prototype creates seven characters with two spaces; the end result looks like it was spit out of an aging dot matrix printer.

Even though the product hasn't shipped yet, Zuta Labs has even bigger dreams for future versions of the printer. Elbaum says the company hopes to put Wi-Fi capability in later versions, as well as add color printing, and the ability to print on more materials than just paper. Imagine, for example, using a robotic printer to create a garage sale notice on cloth or wood.

But that's the future. Right now, the team has to focus on getting the initial grayscale model out the door. The company is so focused on the device itself, it doesn't even have time to consider designing its own printer cartridge. Instead, it will look for a cartridge already available at your local Office Depot or Staples.

If all goes well, Elbaum wants to start selling Pocket Printer pre-orders to non-Kickstarter backers in time for the 2014 holiday season. That batch would then ship sometime in the first quarter of 2015. Initial sales are planned through the company's website before it attempts to branch out into retail.

While pricing has not been set, Elbaum said the company is targeting $240.

That's cheaper than the PocketJet, which sells closer to $400, but the Pocket Printer is still pricey considering wireless all-in-one printers cost less than $100 at Best Buy and they can spit out close to nine pages of text per minute. But if Kickstarter is any guide, the novelty and convenience of the Pocket Printer could make it a hit, even at more than twice the price of a stationary box.

 

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