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PRODUCT DESIGN AND THE VIRTUAL OFFICE HOT TOPICS AT FAXTRENDS PANEL DISCUSSION

 NEW YORK, Dec. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Looking ahead to the millennium, people will witness a dramatic change in facsimile technology for both their business and personal use, concluded a panel of experts at the third annual "FAXTRENDS: Technology and Applications" panel discussion held yesterday in New York, sponsored by Sharp Electronics Corp. Some of discussion highlights included:
 -- Fax of the Future
 Fax machines may soon look like a video printer with a large liquid crystal display (LCD) allowing end-users to view documents without printing, says Bruce Goldstein, senior industrial designer at Sharp Electronics. A decision to either print, erase or respond via fax can then be made. It may even be possible to write or type a fax on the screen and send it directly, bypassing the process of using a computer to first write the fax notice. Multifunctionality -- one product serving as phone, fax, printer, and copier -- is also expected to emerge in fax.
 -- The Virtual Office
 The click of a mouse and tapping of a keyboard will signify the future of the virtual office, where users can operate all facets of office machinery by the touch of a button on a stand-alone unit. Opinions on the social impact and role of the future worker varied among panel members, who included fax analysts, dealers and manufacturers. Joe Cosgrove, national marketing manager for Sharp's facsimile division, felt the transition would be smooth and have no significant effect on the workers, while Tony Petretta, president of The Copier Company, felt strongly that such advanced technology would drastically change the social environment of the workplace.
 -- The End of Glossy Thermal Fax?
 With the arrival of affordable ink-jet plain paper fax machines, Judy Pirani, director of Image Communication Systems, BIS Strategic Decisions, predicted that the thermal market will disappear completely. Cosgrove disagreed, saying that for as long as thermal remains less expensive than ink-jet, there will be a demand. Both sides agree that the emergence of ink-jet will continue to be a major force in the facsimile industry.
 To receive a transcript of the panel discussion, or to obtain more information on the future of the facsimile, contact Gail Birnbaum or Hope Wright at Dorf & Stanton Communications, 212-420-8100, 800-223-2121, or by fax, 212-505-1397.
 -0- 12/10/93
 /CONTACT: Gail Birnbaum or Hope Wright of Dorf & Stanton Communications, 212-420-8100, 800-223-2121, or fax, 212-505-1397/


CO: Sharp Electronics Corp. ST: New York IN: CPR SU:

GK-PS -- NY035 -- 2601 12/10/93 11:58 EST
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Date:Dec 10, 1993
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