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Epson & Planet Green Reach Settlement

Epson & Planet Green Reach Settlement

Epson has announced that Epson America Inc., Epson Portland Inc. and Seiko Epson Corp. have reached a settlement with Planet Green Cartridges Inc. in its lawsuit accusing infringement of its ink cartridge patents and the unlawful selling of remanufactured cartridges across online retail venues. Under the terms of the settlement, Planet Green agreed to cease selling infringing remanufactured cartridges on its websites and Amazon's storefront. The financial terms of the settlement are confidential.

The lawsuit was filed in April 2023 as part of Epson's continuing efforts to combat a persistent culture of infringement and unfair competition that can be found not only with newly built compatible cartridges, but also with remanufactured cartridges.

"The settlement with Planet Green Cartridges ultimately benefits consumers, retail and distribution channels and the larger industry, underscoring the importance of respecting intellectual property rights and upholding a fair marketplace," said Jilana Miller, assistant general counsel, Epson America. "Protecting intellectual property rights encourages innovation, which benefits consumers with the introduction of new technologies."

Epson's innovation has resulted in leading the industry with the launch of EcoTank printers that include supersized, easily refillable ink tanks and EcoFit ink bottles to help reduce the amount of cartridge waste ending up in landfills. EcoTank printers eliminate the need for cartridges entirely, and the time, energy and resources necessary to collect and ship empty cartridges for remanufacturing.

In the suit against Planet Green, Epson alleged infringement of claims from U.S. Patent No. 8,454,116 that were adjudicated in well-publicized actions filed with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), resulting in a General Exclusion Order barring the importation of all newly built and remanufactured cartridges that infringe the claims. The settlement underscores Epson's ongoing efforts to ensure legitimate resellers are allowed to compete fairly for sales of supplies for Epson printers in a market ecosystem promoting fair advertising and informed purchasing decisions.

In other news, as part of its longstanding partnership with Loftware, Epson has announced the ColorWorks CW-C4000 and CW-C6000-series now integrate with Loftware's NiceLabel Cloud platform. This integration offers businesses convenience and efficiency for printing directly from NiceLabel Cloud to Epson ColorWorks cloud-connected printers.

"Businesses can now harness the benefits of the cloud to streamline their label printing processes — all without the need for a locally connected PC," said Andy Scherz, product manager for ColorWorks, Epson America Inc. "This one-step cloud-based solution redefines print efficiency and elevates user experiences."

With ColorWorks cloud-enabled printing, businesses can significantly reduce their dependence on IT resources, minimize print errors and unlock the benefits of full-color label printing, leading to a reduction in costs and inventory of preprinted labels. As global adoption of ERP cloud-based solutions gains momentum, this partnership between Epson and Loftware reiterates a commitment to pioneering labeling solutions that drive businesses toward a more efficient, cost-effective and agile future.

"We have joined forces with Epson to help businesses of all sizes move their labeling into the cloud," said Paul Vogt, vice president of partner strategies, Loftware. "With the cloud, there is huge potential to scale, standardize practice and ultimately drive improvements across the entire enterprise. Businesses that can effectively pivot and embrace new plans for maintaining business will have a competitive edge and set themselves up for future success."

Epson and Loftware cloud-enabled printing offers significant benefits, especially for industries bound by international labeling regulations, such as chemical (GHS), medical device and pharmaceutical. Leveraging Epson's cloud-enabled, color label printing, compliance with color-specific regulations becomes not only easier, but also more reliable. Benefits include:

  • Scalability — Easily add or remove printers as needed; start with one printer locally and grow globally. Ideal for businesses with fluctuating label printing needs or experiencing growth.
  • User-friendly interface — Simple to set up, customize and manage printing tasks.
  • Remote access from virtually anywhere — With cloud connectivity, access and manage label printing tasks from almost anywhere; convenient for businesses with multiple locations or remote employees.
  • Decreased preprinted label inventory cost — Eliminates label scrap due to design changes; no need for ordering an extra 10% of preprinted labels.
  • Centralized control — Manage and monitor multiple printers from a single interface ensuring consistency of label printing across an organization; eliminates the need for individual software installation on each device.
  • Reduce on-site IT overhead — Less need for onsite maintenance and troubleshooting.
  • Robust security — Print directly to local devices with advanced security features.
  • Print directly from ERP/WMS — Integrates seamlessly with other systems such as inventory management or e-commerce platforms.

In other news, Epson has announced new software for businesses to easily transform black-and-white shipping labels to colorful shipping labels that will help elevate their brand. New Label Boost software, compatible with most Epson ColorWorks printers, allows businesses to easily add full-color coupons, targeted ads, secondary labels and dynamic content to shipping labels, creating new opportunities for businesses to leverage shipping labels for marketing, reduce material and labor costs and streamline operations in general.

"Retailers and direct-to-consumer manufacturers are always looking for creative and affordable ways to grow revenue and build customer loyalty," said Tessa Kohl, product manager of DX solutions, Epson America Inc. "Adding colorful messages in the form of branded content, secondary labels, coupons and ads to shipping labels is a unique way for businesses to tap into innovative marketing, to help elevate branding, improve shipping accuracy and streamline operations."

Businesses can use Label Boost software to apply secondary labels, such as regulatory or shipping-and-handling labels, or to highlight critical information, such as parcel count or expedited shipping, to promote accuracy and timeliness of delivery.

Label Boost software is designed for hassle-free deployment, so the bulk of the label creation process remains the same, with modification of the existing label only at the very last step before printing. It works alongside existing shipping software so delivery operations can continue to run seamlessly. Label Boost is compatible with ZPL-driven software used by many national couriers, as well as labeling solutions such as BarTender and Loftware. Businesses can automatically choose the messaging they want to attach based on a customer's location, delivery date or other key variables.

Label Boost software is compatible with most Epson ColorWorks printers, ensuring labels are printed with image quality that's worthy of the brand. In addition, there are no recurring software fees.

Benefits include:

  • Elevate branding — Help increase customer stickiness and engagement by including promotions, product announcements and cross-promotional opportunities on shipping labels
  • Reduce operational costs — Help reduce associated material and labor costs while improving shipping processes for businesses adding secondary labels
  • Improve shipping accuracy — Highlight critical information on shipping labels to provide clear instructions for packages that need special or expedited processing

Available starting in late 2023, Label Boost will be offered through a standalone professional license, as well as with a promotional bundle with the ColorWorks CW-C6000P and a starter 4-by-8-inch roll.

In other news, Epson has announced the new hybrid SureColor F2270 printer is now available. Purpose-built for both direct-to-garment (DTG) and digital-transfer-film (DTFilm) printing, the SureColor F2270 combines outstanding image quality, easy operation and great value in a highly intuitive design. DTFilm printing capability allows print providers to go beyond traditional garment printing and transfer to a wider variety of materials, including uniquely shaped items such as shoes, hats, mugs and more.

Paisley Jo Designs specializes in custom apparel for schools, clubs, businesses, team sports and boutique clothing. Kim Johnson, owner of Paisley Jo Designs, has been using the SureColor F2270 in her business with great success. She touts the maintenance, crisp print quality, hybrid features and operation as benefits to her business and customers.

"The SureColor F2270 is a huge asset to our business; we are able to offer vibrant, full-color graphics with the soft feel that customers want," Johnson said. "The hybrid features allow us to easily move from printing digital film transfers to shirts without making any adjustments on the printer, which helps with production times. Epson has gone above and beyond with this new technology and the features offered in the F2270 — it will be a game changer for a lot of businesses."

Featuring a PrecisionCore MicroTFP printhead and next-generation UltraChrome DG2 Ink, the SureColor F2270 delivers vibrant colors and photographic details at impressive speeds — up to 20% faster when printing on dark garments. The advanced, high-performance printhead technology automatically detects and adjusts performance to produce quality garments and, coupled with a cartridge-free bulk ink pack system, print shops are able to minimize waste and environmental impact.

Additional features are designed to bring a new level of productivity and efficiency, including automatic garment thickness adjustment and robust Epson Garment Creator 2 software. Easy user maintenance features that help reduce downtime include a large 4.3-inch touch screen interface, quick-load platen and access to the Epson Cloud Solution PORT3 that provides live printer monitoring, including production rates and utilization data.

"The SureColor F2270 is a hybrid print solution built for quality, reliability and versatility," said Tim Check, senior product manager for professional imaging, Epson America Inc. "But more than that, the printer was designed with our customers in mind — helping them do it right the first time saves time, money and physical resources. The market reception to this product has been exciting and we are eagerly anticipating the results and feedback from our customers once they start using this new printer."

The SureColor F2270 is now available through Epson Authorized Professional Imaging Resellers for an MSRP of $18,995. The printer is designed for use exclusively with Epson ink packs and includes a one-year limited warranty with on-site service. Extended service plans are available.

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