This Copier Does T Shirts, Too

AS MORE CONSUMERS BUY personal computers for their homes, there is a corresponding huge demand for printers. According to market researcher International Data Corp., 6 out of 10 homes will have a printer by 1999. In an effort to grab the lion's share of that market, Canon Computer Systems Inc. in Costa Mesa, Calif., plans to pitch a new line of color Bubble Jet printers that can do more than print out resumes and homework.

Like its predecessors, the new Bubble Jet printers work by spraying tiny jets of colored inks onto the paper. What sets the new models apart is the Canon Creative software package, a set of programs by Micrografx Inc. and others, that turn the printer into a customized printing press for the entire family. Creative users can design and create custom greeting cards, stationery, and stickers, then print them onto a variety of specialty papers.

What's more, these new printers will take advantage of a lesser-known feature: Bubble Jet technology can print on cotton fabric and has recently been tested in commercial fabric production. Canon plans on making special fabric and so-called transfer sheets available to home Bubble Jet owners, allowing them to create their own fabric patterns and T-shirt designs. The new printers--models BJC-210, BJC-4100, and BJC-610--are priced from $249 to $569.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.