Zink (stylised as ZINK), a portmanteau of "zero ink," is a full-color printing technology for digital devices that does not require ink cartridges and prints in a single pass. The printing technology and its thermal paper are developed by Zink Holdings LLC, a US company, with offices in Edison, NJ and Billerica, MA and a manufacturing facility in Whitsett, NC. Zink Holdings makes all the paper; makes a printer for printing labels and other designs on rolls of Zink zRoll; and licenses its technology to other companies that make compact photo printers, and combined camera / compact photo printers that print photographs onto mostly 2×3” (about 5×8 cm) sheets of Zink Paper. Key licensees include HP, Lifeprint, Prynt and Polaroid.
Zink Holdings LLC
|Industry||Consumer electronics, Photography|
|Headquarters||Billerica, Massachusetts, United States|
Zink Holdings LCC is a technology company headquartered in Billerica, Massachusetts (formerly Bedford, Massachusetts), founded in 2005. It develops what it calls "ZINK Zero Ink technology" and "ZINK Paper". Zink’s Research and development labs and headquarters are in Billerica, with a paper manufacturing plant in Whitsett, North Carolina (using staff and facilities previously used by Konica Minolta).
Zink started as one of two major new technologies being developed inside Polaroid Corporation in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in the 1990s, with 100 researchers working on it. Polaroid Corporation spun out Zink as a fully independent company in 2005, with 50 of its staff moving to it. Zink first unveiled its technology in January 2007, at IDG's DEMO 07 conference.
Zink makes all the paper; makes a printer for printing labels and other designs on rolls of Zink zRoll; and licenses its technology to other companies that make compact photo printers, and combined camera / compact photo printers.[n 1]
The paper has several layers: a backing layer with optional pressure sensitive adhesive, heat-sensitive layers with cyan, magenta and yellow dyes in colorless form, and overcoat.
The color addressing is achieved by controlling the heat pulse length and intensity.
The color-forming layers contain colorless crystals of amorphochromic dyes. These dyes form microcrystals of their colorless tautomers, which convert to the colored form by melting and retain color after resolidification.
The yellow layer is the topmost one, sensitive to short heat pulses of high temperature. The magenta layer is in the middle, sensitive to longer pulses of moderate temperature. The cyan layer is at the bottom, sensitive to long pulses of lower temperature. The layers are separated by thin interlayers, acting as heat insulation, moderating the heat throughput.
Zink Paper printers
Zink Paper printers print photographs onto mostly 2×3” (about 5×8 cm) sheets of Zink Paper, though some print onto 3×4" (about 8×10 cm) paper.
- Dell Wasabi (PZ310)
- HP Sprocket
- HP Sprocket Plus
- LG Pocket Photo (PD233)
- Polaroid Grey Label GL10 (PLDGL10PRINTR) – produces 3×4" prints. Discontinued.
- Polaroid PoGo
- Polaroid Zip Instant Photoprinter (POLMP01)
- Prynt Case (later called Prynt Classic)
- Prynt Pocket
- Brother VC-500W
Combined digital cameras and Zink printers
- Polaroid PoGo[n 2] (CZA-05300) – a 5 MP digital camera that produces 2×3" prints
- Polaroid PIC-1000 – a 12 MP digital camera that produces 3×4" prints
- Polaroid Z340 – a 14 MP digital camera that produces 3×4" prints
- Polaroid Z2300 Digital Instant Print Camera (POLZ2300) – a 10 MP digital camera that produces 2×3" prints
- Tomy Xiao (TIP-521) – a 5 MP digital camera that produces 2×3" prints
- Polaroid Socialmatic – a 14 MP digital camera with 4.5" LCD screen, produces 2x3" prints 
- Polaroid Snap Instant Digital Camera (POLSP01) – a 10 MP digital camera that produces 2×3" prints
- Polaroid Snap Plus – a 13 MP digital camera with 3.5" LCD screen, produces 2x3" prints.
- Polaroid Pop (announced at CES 2017) – 3x4" format
Zink zRoll printers
Stylised as ZINK hAppy. Marketed as a "smart app printer". Launched in 2013.
- Zink Paper
- Zink Photo Paper (POLZPPxxx)† – 2×3" (about 5×7.6 cm) sheets
- Zink Photo Paper (POLZ3X4xx) – 3×4" (about 8×10 cm) sheets
- Premium Zink Photo Paper (POLZ2X3xx) – 2×3” sheets
- Premium Zink Rainbow Photo Paper (POLZ2X3xxRB) – 2×3” sheets
- HP Sprocket Photo Paper – 2×3" (5×7.6 cm) sheets
- HP Sprocket Plus Photo Paper – 2.3×3.4" (5.8×8.7 cm) sheets
- Zink zRoll - available in a variety of widths
† The 'x' in the model represents the number of sheets of paper in the pack.
- Actually Alps Electric produce the Zink print engines, and Foxconn and Lite-On build Zink-based products for major consumer-products companies.
- The combined Polaroid digital camera / printers should not be confused with the analogue Polaroid Pic-300 instant camera and PIF-300 instant film, which is a rebranded Fujifilm Instax Mini 7s camera and Fujifilm Instax Mini film, respectively.
- By Erick Schonfeld and Chris Morrison, Business 2.0 Magazine. "The next disruptors - September 1, 2007". CNNMoney. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Zink: Inkless Printing With Colorless Color - IEEE Spectrum". IEEE Spectrum. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Kirsner, Scott. "Chasing the Polaroid magic in a digital age". Boston Globe. The Boston Globe. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- "ZINK Imaging | CrunchBase". crunchbase.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "ZINK Imaging Closes $35 Million in Series B Financing Led by Genii Capital and Expands Executive Team With the Addition of Co-CEOs - Yahoo Finance". finance.yahoo.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "ZINK: Private Company Information - Businessweek". bloomberg.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "ZINK Raises $35 Million, Aims To Popularize Ink-Free Printing | TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Hoffman, Patrick (6 July 2007). "Zink to Step-Up Production of Inkless Printing Paper". PC Magazine. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
- Humphries, Matthew (9 July 2007). "Inkless Photo Printing | Computerworld". Geek.com. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
- Mark Hall. "Inkless Photo Printing | Computerworld". computerworld.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "ZINK Promises Ink-Less Printing | News & Opinion | PCMag.com". pcmag.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "DEMO 07: ZINK Imaging, LLC. - ZINK Digital Imaging Technology". DemoConferences. 19 February 2007. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
- "Wasabi PZ310 Mobile Printer FAQ - Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) - 357683 | Dell US". dell.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Dell Wasabi PZ310 Mobile Photo Printer; Photo Printer Reviews". uk.pcmag.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Dell's Wasabi PZ310 ZINK printer now available for $99". Engadget. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Dell Wasabi PZ310 Review: Dell's portable photo printer only costs $30 - Back to School - Dell - PC World Australia". pcworld.idg.com.au. 5 September 2016. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Heater, Brian. "HP's new photo printer is almost as good as owning an instant camera". TechCrunch. TechCrunch. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- "HP Sprocket Plus". Good Housekeeping. Retrieved 2018-06-18.
- "LG Pocket Photo printer review | TheINQUIRER". theinquirer.net. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Raymundo, Oscar. "Hands-on:LifePrint AR printer lets you share GIFs, LivePhotos, and Vines in real life". MacWorld. MacWorld. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- "Polaroid GL10 - Instagram Photo Printer for Android | Polaroid Australia". Polaroid Corporation. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Polaroid ZIP Instant Photoprinter". polaroid.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "The Prynt Case Turns Your Smartphone Into A Polaroid Camera | TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Hands-On With Prynt, the Printer That’s a Phone Case | WIRED". wired.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Jeffery, Cal. "Compact photo printer turns iPhone into a Polaroid". TechSpot. TechSpot. Retrieved 27 May 2017.
- "Polaroid PoGo Instant Digital Camera". uk.pcmag.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Sorrel, Charlie. "Polaroid Resurrects Instant Film Cameras". Wired. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
- Aquadog. "Polaroid PIC 1000 Instant Film Camera and 3"x4" Instant Digital Camera". Photography Review. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
- "Polaroid is back with Z340 instant digital camera and printer". wirefresh.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Polaroid Z2300 Instant Digital Camera". Polaroid Corporation. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Tomy Xiao TIP-521 Camera With Built-in Zink Printer Now Available For Purchase". Gadget Review. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "xiao TIP-521: Tomy releases 5 megapixel camera with built-in printer | TechCrunch". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Tomy Xiao TIP-521 Is Polaroid Wannabe Without All the Charm". gizmodo.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Tomy xiao digital camera has built in Zink printer, the spirit of Polaroids". Engadget. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Dillet, Roman. "The Polaroid Socialmatic Is An Android Camera And An Instant Printer Mashed Together". TechCrunch. TechCrunch. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- "Polaroid Snap Instant Digital Camera". Polaroid Corporation. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- Russell, Brandon. "Polaroid Snap Plus is an instant camera for a digital generation". Technobuffalo. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- Boyle, Emma. "Polaroid's new Pop camera is a modern twist on a classic brand image". TechRadar. TechRadar. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- "ZINK Imaging Creates A New Category Of Creative Devices -- The Smart App Printer™ -- With Launch Of". prnewswire.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Zink hAppy Smart App Printer; Leitz Icon Smart Labeling System". uk.pcmag.com. Retrieved 2016-09-04.
- "Zink's hAppy and hAppy+ smart app printers cater to gleeful labelers". Engadget. Retrieved 2016-09-04.