"It's an attempt to redress the balance against HP and other printer manufacturers. HP has declared war on copiers to sell more printers but the mopier concept [a network printer with sorting and stapling features] doesn't address all needs," said Keith Hanks, marketing manager for Toshiba's copier/fax division.
Hanks said the new product, to be called the DP2460, will be "a new level of multifunction device". To be priced in the £6,000-7,000 range, the unit will offer 24ppm A4 printing (or 14ppm A3), walk-up copying and network scanning.
The product is the first fruit of a new Irvine, California software research and development centre from which Toshiba is hoping to establish a bigger say in the digital printing and copying market. Before the end of the year, Hanks expects such devices to offer a feature that will enable paper documents to be converted to digital format and sent via e-mail. DVD-based document storage could also be added.
Toshiba can be contacted by telephone on 01932-841600.