Sharp to Hawk Home E-mail Device

Japanese home internet users will be the initial target of the new Sharp Iprimera, a combination e-mail terminal and printer, as the number of Japanese internet users is predicted to hit the 20 million mark by 2000.

Aiming at a burgeoning group of Internet savvy home users in Japan, electronics maker Sharp Corp. will begin selling a combination e-mail terminal and printer from next week.

The Iprimera, a fusion of the Japanese pronunciation of the words "Internet," "printer," and "mailer," will ship July 28 for 135,000 yen (US$1,136), Sharp said today. The Japanese vendor is planning an initial production run of 10,000 units per month.

The DOS-based Iprimera will offer users e-mail, fax and Internet functions on its 10.4-inch, 640-by-480-pixel LCD (liquid-crystal display). The 37.7 centimeter by 23.6 centimeter by 21.4 centimeter machine comes with a 33.6K bits-per-second modem and runs on a SH-series RISC (reduced instruction set computer) processor from Hitachi Ltd., according to a Sharp spokesman.

A 255-color printer is built into the device which weighs 5.6 kilograms.

Sharp is counting on rising interest in the Internet, and especially e-mail, in Japan to drive sales of the product, according to a release from the company issued today. A recent report by market research firm Access Media International Inc. predicted that the number of Internet users in Japan would break the 20 million [M] mark by 2000, up from 15.1 million [M] in February of this year.

The increasing trend of users connecting to the 'Net through non-PC products may also help boost sales of the Iprimera, Sharp said.

A spokesman at the company said that Sharp does not have any immediate plans to sell the device overseas.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments