Choosing the right barcode reading technology is fundamental to achieving optimal performance from a data collection solution. As new symbologies and technologies are developed, the choices are more varied than ever. There has been much debate on the merits of laser-based and imager-based barcode readers, and in fact, some have asserted that only imager-based readers should be considered for new automation applications.
Should laser barcode scanners be considered “obsolete” technology and are imagers (camera-based readers) the only viable technology for today’s applications? While imagers have seen increased use due to the growing adoption of 2D symbols such as Data Matrix, laser scanners still set the standard for accurate, high speed barcode reading in many applications. The optimal barcode reading solution will be dictated by the specific requirements of an application.
3 Critical Considerations:
Is the application using 1D, stacked, 2D, or a combination of symbols?
Are the barcodes good quality and consistently placed?
During daily retail scanning activities, an operator’s best experience is to work with a fast, easy-to-use, friendly, and pleasant looking device that they can rely on. Combining all these features together, the new Cobalto CO5300 from Datalogic guarantees an excellent value for customers looking for outstanding performance in a stylish and full-featured omnidirectional presentation scanner.
Datalogic is pleased to announce that the highly successful Skorpio X3 product line has been further enhanced, now with additional models featuring our new 2D multi-purpose imaging engine.
The new 2D engine is easily recognized with its highly visible white-illumination and is equipped with Datalogic’s patented ‘Green Spot’ technology. Ideally suited for most any general purpose need for reading 1D or 2D codes, the multi-purpose imager is the best choice for future-proofing your customer.
Features and Benefits of the Multi-Purpose 2D Imager
With only one set of optics, the multi-purpose 2D imager can address a wide range of applications, from high density bar codes to the standard range distances
Aiming is fast and simplified by using 4 dots to indicate the scanning area
White illumination is easier on the human eyes and reads colored labels better
In today’s competitive environment, distribution centers need highly efficient solutions that boost forklift operator productivity and performance. Honeywell is pleased to announce its newest full-size vehicle mount computer, the Thor VM3, designed to deliver unmatched operational efficiencies in the toughest distribution center environments.
Offering the latest security and productivity-enhancing features and functionality, the VM3 enables users to maximize efficiencies in activities such as case picking, truck loading, putaway and replenishment. The VM3 offers three breakthrough features that reduce downtime and enable greater worker productivity and efficiency. Plus, implementation and deployment into existing and future IT infrastructures is simple.
Designed for use in the toughest distribution center environments, manufacturing facilities and freight operations, the new Honeywell Thor VM3 is the industry’s most capable full-size vehicle-mounted mobile computer. Combining laptop-like simplicity with advanced application performance, the device gives operators the right tools to improve productivity and task accuracy.
The VM3 offers the best purpose-built device in its class due to its simple and easy system integration, and flexibility to support multiple operating systems. It includes the largest display available in a Windows CE platform vehicle-mount computer, while equipping operators with the legacy Thor features, including a quick-mount Smart Dock and field-replaceable front panel, to allow greater worker productivity, minimize support costs, and maintain compliance with all IT policies.
Acquiring data with barcode reading or machine vision inspection devices boosts speed and accuracy in automation machines. But embedding the wrong device can undermine your machine’s total power and lifespan. Make sure the device you choose meets precise requirements for form, fit, and function for the life of your embedded system by checking these five facts.
What to Know Before Integration:
Barcode Type and Orientation – Do you need to read 1D barcodes or 2D symbols like Data Matrix? How are barcodes presented to the reader?
Inspection Requirements – Do you need to check part features like color, position, or defects?
Application Speed – How many codes or parts does your device need to process per second?
Integration Space – What are the physical dimensions of the space? What are the optical dimensions that allow the device to “see” the part or code in focus?
Data Communication Needs – How is acquired data sent to the outside world? Can you control your device from outside your machine?
Zebra has introduced their new Symbol DS7708 2D vertical slot scanner. The compact DS7708 is easy to install and ideal for wide variety of retail applications including food retailers (grocery stores, supermarkets, hypermarkets), specialty retailers (Do-It-Yourself, hardware, pet supplies) and pharmacies where it can help improve efficiency and customer service at the point of sale. Protect sales and improve customer service with the power to ring up purchase faster than ever with the DS7708.
Captures virtually any barcode (1D/2D displayed on mobile devices or printed labels) even if the codes are damaged, poorly printed or dirty
PRZM imaging technology resets the bar for 2D imaging by improving decode performance and snappiness
High swipe speeds allow store associates to pass barcodes quickly in front of the scanner – dramatically improving the and reducing customer waiting times
Automatically deactivate electronic article surveillance (EAS) tags that help reduce theft
Imagining capabilities allows cashiers to easily take a picture of a check or ID card to meet store requirements or industry regulations
Recessed scan window is protected from marks and scratches that can impair performance
Connectors and scanning components are located toward the top of the unit, preventing it from being damaged by splashes and spills
Supports over 90 international keyboards and utilizes auto-detect cables for fast and easy deployment
During 2014 SATO announced the End Of Life of the following barcode printers and their limited availability. At this time, inventory of these products have run their supply and SATO cannot fulfill any further orders placed for these models.
Plant Access is a specialized logistics services provider, catering for the green life industry. Plant Access provides a highly efficient service utilizing a unique, innovative steel stillage design used to pick, crossdock and deliver nursery plants to Bunnings Warehouse locations across Victoria and South Australia.
Weeding out manual processes
Plant Access manages the orders and provides the steel stillages that are used to transport plant products from over 67 nursery supplier sites to Bunnings stores across Victoria and South Australia. Shipments from different suppliers are consolidated at the Plant Access cross dock facility before orders are transported to Bunnings locations and plants are sold to consumers direct out of the steel stillages.
At any one time, Plant Access has thousands of re-usable steel stillages spread across hundreds of sites throughout the supply chain. Knowing the location of all these stillages and the status of an order was a serious challenge for Plant Access under a legacy paper-based manual ordering system.
A new automated tracking system was necessary to capture real-time data from nursery supplier sites, the Plant Access cross dock logistics facility and the Bunnings stores, in order for Plant Access to have an accurate and instant visibility of their stillage assets and the products they were transporting.
Building a flourishing future with RFID
“Plant Access commissioned us to design and pilot an automated system to track the tailor-made steel stillages, which would allow real time visibility of customer orders across the supply chain,” said Geoffrey Ramadan, Managing Director, Unique Micro Design (UMD). “Following successful testing of Honeywell Scanning & Mobility RFID technology, Plant Access decided to roll out a pilot automated track and trace system supported by our cloud network enabling real time information to be accessible from multiple locations.”
Honeywell IT75 ruggedised metal-mount UHF RFID tags are now attached to the specially designed stillages so when scanned and processed at key intervals in the supply chain they feed real time track and trace information to the Plant Access cloud. The pilot system allows supplier nurseries to pull down orders from the Plant Access cloud for data capture by workers on RFID enabled Honeywell CN70 rugged mobile terminals. The handheld computers are used in the nursery to pick and pack orders, scan the RFID tags on packed stillages and finally register the order as packed on the cloud so Plant Access is notified that the order is ready for pick-up and transportation.
For a leading ISO 13485:2003-certified OEM manufacturer of enzymes, meeting the rigorous demands of commercial entities engaged in the development, manufacture, and distribution of platforms dedicated to nucleic-acid identification is a daily challenge. Enzymes are critical to the performance of these applications, and the industry’s relentless pursuit of higher performance emphasizes the need for analytical-reagent purity and absolute production consistency. Operating from the perspective that they are “a manufacturing division of their customer,” the company consistently delivers the highest quality and value enzymes, leveraging them to drive customer success via a business partnership model. Part of that consistent delivery means labeling goods so that they are easily and accurately identified when they arrive in the lab.
When enzymes are manufactured, they start in batches of 50-gallon vats, and then are broken down into small vials as part of a kit sold to research and testing facilities. These vials must be labeled individually; the labels include a great deal of data, two-dimensional barcodes, and very small type. Because of the temperatures at which they need to be maintained, cryogenic polypropylene labels are used.
“With the printers they had installed, they were having problems with registration and print quality, primarily due to the small size of the labels,” says Dana Ritchie, principal at PaladinID LLC, a Laconia, N.H.-based specialist in barcode labeling. “It was a label and ribbon issue, a clarity and quality issue.”
Along with registration issues, the legacy printers were having problems with label drift. Further, consistency of printhead pressure was problematic: operators had to make a judgment regarding how much head pressure to apply; consequently, the manual setting could easily vary from operator to operator. This could very well affect consistency of print.
Ritchie recommended a switch to the Datamax-O’Neil Performance Series 1120n Near-Edge printer, which he describes as “designed for this kind of challenging application.” The first of printer was installed in August 2011. Three more have been purchased subsequently; and as the company phases out the balance of its legacy printers, it’s committed to replacing them with the 1120n.
“Because the 1120n is a near-edge printer, it does a fantastic job on the polypropylene labels,” says Ritchie. “It was designed for thicker and hard-to-image materials.” The 1120n’s near-edge printhead increases reliability and provides clean, crisp graphics and ladder barcodes, which results in a higher scan rating. Further, it has a one-million inch or one-year printhead warranty—twice that of most printhead warranties on the market today.
Datamax-O’Neil and Honeywell share a focus on innovation and customer service, making this combination a truly exciting event for the industry. Datamax-O’Neil is now part of a global Fortune 100 company with 140,000 employees in over 100 countries and can benefit from the processes and expertise that Honeywell will provide.
The robust product portfolio, trusted brands, and innovation leadership that Datamax-O’Neil brings to this new relationship are a strong complement to the Honeywell Scanning & Mobility business. Together, they will provide access to even stronger technologies enabling even a more expanded product offering
“Today is an exciting day for Honeywell and Datamax-O’Neil as we join together to meet and exceed the needs of our combined customers while staking out a leadership role in the estimated $1.5 billion global barcode printing segment,” said John Waldron, president, Honeywell Scanning & Mobility. “We’ve been at the forefront of the AIDC industry for more than 40 years – helping customers be more efficient in how they move and track assets from one location to another, and process the information related to those transactions. Thermal printing and media are important components of our strategy to offer customers one of the industry’s broadest portfolios of ruggedized mobile computers, scanners, voice-enabled workflow solutions, printing, software and service capabilities.”
Datamax-O’Neil will be integrated with Honeywell Scanning & Mobility based in Fort Mill, South Carolina, a business of Honeywell Automation and Control Solutions.
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