Sharp Announces Tech-It-Up Program for K-12 Schools

Win $100,000 in technology for your school!

Enter to win $100,000 worth of technology from Sharp Electronics Corporation through Millennium Business Systems!

Sharp Electronics Corporation is awarding $100,000 worth of state-of-the-art Sharp products to one K-12 accredited school in the 50 United States and District of Columbia. In addition, ten runner-up winners will win a 70″ Class AQUOS BOARD interactive display system!

For a chance to win, tell us how your school would integrate Sharp technology such as interactive whiteboards, professional display monitors and document systems (multifunctional copiers) to improve your students’ educational experience. How would your students benefit by this award?

Tech-It-Up runs from February 11, 2015 through April 30, 2015. K – 12 school winners will be announced on, or about, May 15, 2015. For more information and to register, please visit:   Please list Millennium Business Systems as the dealer on the submission form. If your school is chosen, we will work closely with you to pick the right equipment that will maximize your winnings. Good luck!

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Lexmark acquires Claron Technology

  • Lexmark International, Inc. (NYSE: LXK) today announced the acquisition of Toronto-based Claron Technology, Inc. (Claron), a leading provider of medical image viewing, distribution, sharing and collaboration software technology. Lexmark paid a cash purchase price of approximately $37 million, which was funded entirely with Lexmark’s non U.S.-based cash.
  • Claron’s enterprise medical image viewing platform offers easy, Web-based access to patient imaging studies from picture archiving and communication systems (PACS) or vendor neutral archives (VNAs), enabling referring physicians, clinicians and specialists to view patient imaging studies and collaborate in real time to improve patient care.
  • Claron’s solutions help healthcare delivery organizations provide universal access to patient imaging studies and other content across and between healthcare enterprises.
  • One of Claron’s leading medical image solutions is a universal Web-based zero-footprint viewer that enables diagnostic interpretation of medical images and related digital information on a variety of computers anytime, anywhere across a healthcare provider’s enterprise. This universal viewer supports viewing of all cleared digital imaging and communications in medicine (DICOM) imaging modalities and both 2-D and 3-D viewing. It also requires no software to download while delivering a medical view comparable to any PACS solution.
  • Claron will report into Lexmark’s Perceptive Software. With this acquisition, Perceptive Software expands its offering to healthcare providers by enabling referring physicians and clinicians to access, view and collaborate on patient information and medical images that reside outside the electronic medical records (EMR) systems, while concurrently image-enabling the EMR and providing easy Web-based access via desktop and mobile devices.
  • Claron and Lexmark’s other healthcare technology acquisitions are enabling Perceptive Software to further expand its medical content management strategy. The combination of Perceptive Software’s content and process management platform; industry-leading VNA functionality to enable centralized storage, management and medical imaging sharing; and the universal viewer, will enable Perceptive Software to offer unique, interoperable solutions with vendor neutrality that help eliminate silos that exist today within, and between, healthcare organizations. The result is improved access to content and better patient care.
  • The acquisition of Claron demonstrates the consistent execution of Lexmark’s capital allocation framework, which is to pursue acquisitions that support growth and increase software and solutions capabilities, while returning more than 50 percent of free cash flow to shareholders, on average, through quarterly dividends and share repurchases.
  • As part of this transaction, the surgical navigation portion of Claron will not transfer to Lexmark and will operate under the name Claronav.

Supporting Quotes

“Digital content in all forms continues to exponentially grow, particularly in healthcare.   Physicians, other providers and the health information exchanges must be equipped to utilize this content more quickly and collaborate more efficiently to better serve patients,” said Paul Rooke, Lexmark’s chairman and chief executive officer. “The acquisition of Claron further differentiates Lexmark by providing solutions to help physicians and providers view images across devices and the enterprise, enabling better collaboration and patient care.”

“The acquisition of Claron and its medical image viewing, distribution, sharing and collaboration technology further strengthens Perceptive Software’s medical content management offering and demonstrates our commitment to helping healthcare providers fully leverage their technology resources to improve patient care,” said Scott Coons, Perceptive Software president and chief executive officer and Lexmark vice president.

“Claron is pleased to join Lexmark’s Perceptive Software and to bring our combined offering to the healthcare industry,” said Claudio Gatti, Claron’s co-founder and co-chief executive officer. “By incorporating Claron technology into Perceptive Software’s medical content management solutions, we will further enable healthcare delivery organizations to share the information needed to make better care decisions.The broad combined product offering and the increased capacities of Claron will also greatly benefit our growing network of global OEM partners.”

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Lexmark to Exit Inkjet Printer Business

Lexmark Pinnacle Pro915

Lexmark on Tuesday announced that it will shake up the company in a series of moves that primarily involve ending the development and manufacturing of inkjet printer hardware.

It was the second such announcement from a major tech company this week. Sony announced its own major restructuring effort on Monday.

Lexmark, which said it will continue to provide service, support, and supplies for its installed inkjets through the end of 2015, expects to save an annual $95 million once the plan is fully implemented, according to a news release.

About 1,700 employees worldwide will be laid off during the process–primarily those in Lexmark’s inkjet business unit, as well as some holding positions in research and development, supply chain management, and other support areas.

Lexmark’s Philippines-based inkjet supplies manufacturing facility will be shuttered by the end of 2015.

“Today’s announcement represents difficult decisions, which are necessary to drive improved profitability and significant savings,” Lexmark CEO Paul Rooke said in a statement.

By the close of 2013, the company’s global inkjet development will be wound down, helping to generate $85 million in savings next year. Ongoing annual savings are expected to increase to $95 million beginning in 2015, according to the company.

Lexmark broke down its intended total-program cash flow impact, projecting a total $75 million in savings from exiting the inkjet business, with $40 million of that coming this year, $30 million in 2013, and the remaining $5 million coming in 2014 and 2015.

A big name in the printer-manufacturing business, Lexmark is turning its focus to laser technology, a direction that Marty Canning, Lexmark executive vice president and president of Imaging Solutions and Services, said makes more sense for the company going forward.

Canning told PCMag that Lexmark conducted a major strategy overview and weighed a variety of options, but finally settled on shutting down the inkjet division, which was not providing enough in volume sales to make it a sustainable business.

Other vendors have made similar moves, according to Canning, who said, “I think in these segments where Lexmark is focused, laser technology makes more sense for us.”

“We see lots of opportunity to continue to innovate and evolve laser technology,” Canning said.

Still, inkjet technology could make a comeback at Lexmark, the executive said.

“I would never say never,” Canning said when asked whether the company may ever return to inkjet production.

Meanwhile, Lexmark also announced on Tuesday that it plans an additional $100 million of share repurchases in the third and fourth quarters of this year, which will allow the company to return more than $500 million to shareholders since mid-2011.

On Monday, Sony announced a phased exit from the optical disc drive business over the next seven months as part of a larger restructuring process.


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Sharp GOES BEYOND 4K with the highest resolution TV

LAS VEGAS, NV (January 5, 2015) – Today at the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show, Sharp unveiled its 2015 AQUOS 4K Ultra HD TV line-up, quadrupling the number of 4K UHD TVs offered across seven screen sizes, ranging from 43” (42.5” diag.) to 80” (diag.) Class screen sizes. The new 4K lineup will include the AQUOS Beyond 4K Ultra HD TV, the highest resolution 4K Ultra HD TV available in 2015.

“Sharp’s display technologies shape the TV industry,” said Jim Sanduski, President, Sharp Electronics Marketing Company of America. “Our 2015 AQUOS 4K Ultra HD TV line delivers our finest picture quality, most beautiful designs and advanced Smart TV features.”

The Highest Resolution UHD TV

The Beyond 4K Ultra HD TV, the highest resolution TV, combines Sharp’s proprietary pixel splitting and Quattron™ technologies, resulting in 66 million subpixels, 42 million more than standard 4K Ultra HD. With more subpixels, this TV delivers 167% greater resolution than traditional 4K UHD and begins to approach 8K.  Sharp’s next generation Revelation™ Upscaler unleashes the full potential of this stunning resolution, whether it’s HD or 4K UHD content.

Available in the 80” (diag.) Class screen size, the amazingly detailed picture delivers the highest standard of color and contrast. Using proprietary SPECTROS™ Rich Color Display and unique Quattron technology, which provides a billion more shades of color, this TV displays more color than any AQUOS TV before it. High Dynamic Range technology and a full array LED with local dimming provide extremely deep blacks and white whites. Additionally, the TV will display more than 100% of the Digital Cinema Initiative (DCI) Color Space.

The Sharp AQUOS Beyond 4K Ultra HD TV will be available in late 2015.

Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD: UB30, UE30 and UH30

In 2015 Sharp will introduce three new series of Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD TVs. All 4K Ultra HD TVs will include the latest 4K specs, including a quad core processor, H.265 and VP9, an all new codec that allows 4K content to play back in its native form.

The UB30 series, the entry level 4K Ultra HD line, will offer for the first time TVs available in 43” (42.5” diag.), 50” (49.5” diag.), 55” (54.5” diag.) and 65” (64.5” diag.) Class screen sizes at prices starting under $750.

The step up, the UE30 series, includes Sharp’s first 80” (diag.) 4K Ultra HD TV, in addition to two of the most popular large screen sizes Sharp has pioneered, 60” (diag.) and 70” (69.5” diag.) Class.

The UH30 series, the flagship line, is built for the picture quality aficionado and the 70” (69.5” diag.) Class model in this series is expected to feature THX 4K certification. To earn this stamp of approval, the UH30 TVs will have passed more than 400 picture quality tests to ensure that every pixel delivers precisely the scene the director intended. The UH30 also comes equipped with SPECTROS™ Rich Color Display, which produces more vibrant and diverse color. With more shades of red and green, you experience more realistic landscapes, lush nature scenes and natural skin tones.

The UE30 and UH30 series will adopt the Android TV™ platform.  Android TV brings together movies, apps and games from Google Play™, as well as helpful features like voice search and the ability to cast content from your mobile device to Sharp televisions.

These models will also include SmartCentral™ 4.0, which enables consumers to browse and search cable, satellite and streaming services from a single screen.  SmartCentral™ 4.0 offers an easy-to-navigate settings and device menu and personalized accounts for each family member.  Plus control and navigation are in the palm of your hand with the SmartCentral™ 4.0 mobile app. Use your tablet or smartphone to browse, search and select content without interrupting what you’re already watching.

Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD UB30 Series

  • 43” (42.5” diag.), 50” (49.5” diag.), 55” (54.5” diag.) and 65” (64.5” diag.) Class screen sizes
  • 4K Ultra HD: 4X the pixel resolution of Full HD
  • Revelation™ Upscaler
  • 4K Ultra HD Streaming (HEVC/h.265; VP9)
  • SmartCentral™ 3.0
  • 4K Ultra HD Specs (HDMI 2.0; HDCP 2.2)
  • Local dimming (65”)
  • Modern Design – ultra slim bezel, sleek stand
  • Wallpaper Mode
  • Quad-core processor
  • 3 HDMI, 2 USB [43" (42.5” diag.), 50" (49.5”)]; 4 HDMI, 2 USB [55" (49.5” diag.), 65” (64.5” diag.) Class screen sizes], optical audio output, Wi-Fi
  • MSRP 43” Class LC43UB30U: $749.99
  • MSRP 50” Class LC50UB30U: $999.99
  • MSRP 55” Class LC55UB30U: $1,199.99
  • MSRP 65” Class LC65UB30U: $2,299.99

Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD UE30 Series

  • 60” (diag.), 70” (69.5” diag.), 80” Class screen sizes
  • 4K Ultra HD: 4X the pixel resolution of Full HD
  • Revelation™ Upscaler
  • 4K Ultra HD Streaming (HEVC/h.265; VP9)
  • AquoMotion™ 480
  • AquoDimming™
  • SmartCentral™ 4.0
  • Android TV platform
  • 4K Ultra HD Specs (HDMI 2.0; HDCP 2.2)
  • 70″  (69.5” diag.) has 16% more screen area than a 65″ (64.5” diag.) Class; 80″ (diag.) has 50% more screen area than a 65″ (64.5” diag.) Class TV
  • Modern Design – ultra slim bezel, sleek stand
  • Dual Stand Placement Options (70” diag./80” diag.)
  • Wallpaper Mode
  • Quad-core processor
  • 4 HDMI, 3 USB, Wi-Fi
  • MSRP 60” Class LC60UE30: $1,999.99
  • MSRP 70” Class LC70UE30: $2,799.99
  • MSRP 80” Class LC80UE30: $5,399.99

Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD UH30 Series

  • 70” (69.5” diag.) and 80” (diag.) Class Screen Sizes
  • THX 4K-Certified Picture Quality (THX certification pending 70” (69.5” diag.) only
  • SPECTROS™ Rich Color Display
  • Revelation™ Upscaler
  • 4K Ultra HD Streaming (HEVC/h.265; VP9)
  • 4K Ultra HD Specs (HDMI 2.0, HDCP 2.2)
  • AquoMotion™ 960
  • AquoDimming™
  • SmartCentral™ 4.0
  • Android TV platform
  • 70″ (69.5”) diag. has 16% more screen area than a 65″ (64.5” diag.) Class.; 80″ (diag.) has 50% more screen area than a 65″ Class
  • Modern Design – ultra slim bezel, sleek stand
  • Dual Stand Placement Options
  • Wallpaper Mode
  • Quad-core processor
  • Touchpad Remote
  • 4 HDMI, 3 USB, Wi-Fi
  • MSRP 70” Class LC70UH30: $3,199.99
  • MSRP 80” Class LC80UH30: $5,999.99

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Sharp puts the Future On Display at 2015 International CES

LAS VEGAS, N.V. (January 5, 2015) – With an astute focus on resolution, form and design, Sharp unveiled the latest innovations in display technology at the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas including smart phones, tablets, commercial displays, in car displays and televisions.

Sharp announced breakthrough technologies that power the industry’s highest resolution television available in 2015, the frameless smartphone AQUOS Crystal, the first spec’d 85” 8K LCD and the world’s largest 4K Ultra HD LCD commercial display. Additionally, Sharp’s LCD technology takes a new form, allowing displays of virtually any shape to be integrated into consumer products.

“Sharp has always strived to make products that improve people’s lives,” said Toshiyuki Osawa, General Sales & Marketing Officer & President Sharp Electronics Corporation. “Sharp is a company of inventors who have created the next generation of display technologies that extend far beyond the living room and simply cannot be duplicated by other companies.”

All of the innovations touched upon during the press conference will be featured at the 2015 International CES.

Resolution: 4K Ultra HD and Beyond

In 2015 Sharp will offer consumers the highest resolution TV, the AQUOS Beyond 4K UHD TV. To create this revolutionary TV, Sharp has applied proprietary pixel-splitting and Quattron™ technologies, which result in 66 million subpixels—42 million more than standard 4K.  With more subpixels, this TV delivers 167% greater resolution than traditional 4K UHD and begins to approach 8K.  This television also produces more color than any other television Sharp has ever produced and stunning high contrast and has been named a 2015 International CES Innovation Award honoree.

Alongside the AQUOS Beyond 4K UHD TV, Sharp is offering high resolution in-home television options for every consumer by quadrupling the number of televisions in the AQUOS 4K UHD line-up from 43” to 80” Class, including five new screen sizes.  There will be three new series of Sharp AQUOS 4K Ultra HD TVs, the UE, UB and UH series, all offering cutting-edge picture technologies, amazing detail, modern design and consistent color.  The UE and UH series will be equipped with Sharp’s redesigned SmartCentral, SmartCentral™ 4.0 on the Android ™ TV platform. Android TV opens the door to a truly smart experience and to the vast variety of TV optimized apps available on Google Play™.

Sharp will demonstrate a 70” Class Super Slim 4K Ultra HD Television, which has a depth of less than half an inch and offers a distinctive and novel design, paired with 4K Ultra HD picture quality.  By utilizing a glass light guide plate to distribute light through the LCD panel, this TV is able to be designed in large screen sizes with a very slim footprint.

Sharp is leading the movement to next generation resolution and will showcase an 85” 8K LCD display prototype at 2015 CES.  This TV is the world’s first 8K LCD display that is compliant with the standards of the first 8K test broadcasts, expected in Japan as soon as 2016.  With a native resolution of 7680×4320, this TV is not only the first to be BT.2020 compliant, but also offers 120Hz native panel refresh rate and has a bit depth of 12 bits per pixel and delivers 400cd brightness.

Forms of the Future

Sharp’s design innovation extends to the Sharp AQUOS Crystal smartphone, the first available smartphone in the U.S. from Sharp’s AQUOS line of devices. The AQUOS Crystal features a 5” groundbreaking frameless display that goes right to the edge of the phone.  It incorporates two innovations: a thin-bezel LCD module and technology that uses the optical lens effect on the front panel to virtually eliminate edges and minimize device size.

Breakthrough LCD innovations in the commercial sector will also be showcased. Sharp will unveil a number of 2015 professional display models, as well as future technology demonstrations that are being exhibited in conjunction with Sakai Display Products Corporation (SDP), the company that owns the only factory in the world to manufacture large-screen LCDs using 10th Generation glass substrate.

Among these demonstrations will be a 120” 4K Ultra HD Commercial LCD Display.  As the world’s largest 4K Ultra HD LCD display, it is an ideal alternative to video walls in public spaces and projectors in conference rooms and classrooms. This display can showcase detailed text and brilliant high-resolution content.

Another commercial technology demonstration is a 60” Class Professional Wraparound LCD Display. Incorporating a convex curve wraparound design (approximately a 150 degree arc), it is designed for pillar signage applications; offering show-goers new possibilities beyond flat panel displays in the growing digital signage market.

Engineering Iconic Designs

Going even further in the development of LCD technology, Sharp is freeing LCDs from the restriction to be rectangular with its new FFD (Free Form Display) technology, which allows designers to integrate a display of virtually any shape into their products.  Free Form Displays move circuitry out of the bezel and into each pixel, opening a new world of possibilities for product design by eliminating the need for traditional rectangular LCD form factors and providing a stylish, ultra-thin bezel.

This new technology will drastically impact automotive displays, since now dashboard screens can be designed in completely new shapes. In the mobile market, the rectangular cell phone or tablet display may soon be a thing of the past. There are also applications in the rapidly growing wearable market.

These Free Form Displays are enabled by IGZO®, an oxide semiconductor that Sharp is the first in the world to successfully mass-produce.  Sharp is developing an expanding line of IGZO-based display products that increase resolution, significantly reduce power consumption and improve touch response, as compared to traditional TFT-LCD technology.

Sharp continues to push the boundaries of innovation and there have been great strides in commercializing MEMS-IGZO displays. By combining Sharp’s deep expertise in LCD and IGZO, with the MEMS shutter technology from Pixtronix, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, the display enables high color reproducibility displays that use very low power and perform in a wide variety of environmental conditions. A 7” Sharp tablet, on display at CES, will be the first product in the industry that utilizes this high color reproducibility, low power MEMS-IGZO display.

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