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  1. Technology
November 13, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

Mannesmann Tally Ltd is making an attempt to double the 4% UK market share of laser printers won by its MT 910 with the introduction of the new MT905. Wokingham, Berkshire-based Mannesmann Tally claims the 905 offers ownership cost advantages over Hewlett-Packard and other machines – including consumables, unit costs and maintenance, these amount to 2.49 pence per page. The entry-level MT905 laser printer, priced at $1,400, will be targeted at government, large corporates, and Amstrad users within small businesses and education – it also wants to attract users of daisywheel and dot matrix printers who wish to upgrade to laser technology. Mannesmann Tally hopes the new product will increase its UK revenues from laser printers by UKP7m to take it to UKP12m, and unit sales to 8,000 from 3,000 annually. It sees volume in the next five years coming predominantly at the low end; printers with a capacity of below 11 pages per minute have European shipments of around 300,000 units, a figure International Data Corp predicts will grow to 1.4m in 1992. As for 11 to 20 page per minute printers, 11,000 are currently sold, a figure that should rise to 160,000 come 1992. IDC figures also show that revenues from page printers grew by 130% in 1986-87 to claim 6.5% of the European market, second only to dot matrix; and although serial interface dot matrix printers will continue to dominate unit sales, with around 75%, page printer’s 15% of sales should account for 37% of revenues. On the European front, 63% of shipments continue to be concentrated in the UK, West Germany and France, and the European Community will exert a growing influence on the European marketplace – for instance, community leaders have made it clear they will clamp down on any attempts to use dumping to boost market share. As for its own future, Mannesmann Tally will have 18 to 20 page per minute laser printers by 1990, and will focus on all technologies except daisywheel, which it sees as being in long term decline; it also promises four new products in the New Year. The MT905 itself features an engine from Technics, the Japanese manufacturer’s first major venture into page printing. Standard features include six page per minute print speed, Hewlett-Packard LaserJet Series II emulation, 512Kb memory, RS232, RS422 and Centronics parallel interfaces, as well as Courier and line printer fonts; optional features include IBM Proprinter, Epson FX and Diablo 630 emulation, 2Mb and 4Mb memory, as well as a line of Hewlett Packard-compatible fonts.

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