WO2010041250A1 - A system and method for the automated application of up to date price tags - Google Patents

A system and method for the automated application of up to date price tags Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2010041250A1
WO2010041250A1 PCT/IL2009/000959 IL2009000959W WO2010041250A1 WO 2010041250 A1 WO2010041250 A1 WO 2010041250A1 IL 2009000959 W IL2009000959 W IL 2009000959W WO 2010041250 A1 WO2010041250 A1 WO 2010041250A1
Authority
WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
means
price
data
tags
articles
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/IL2009/000959
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Dov Stelzer
Shimon Yurman
Arie Sagiv
Rami Hanan
Original Assignee
Dov Stelzer
Shimon Yurman
Arie Sagiv
Rami Hanan
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to US10288308P priority Critical
Priority to US61/102,883 priority
Application filed by Dov Stelzer, Shimon Yurman, Arie Sagiv, Rami Hanan filed Critical Dov Stelzer
Publication of WO2010041250A1 publication Critical patent/WO2010041250A1/en

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Classifications

    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65CLABELLING OR TAGGING MACHINES, APPARATUS, OR PROCESSES
    • B65C11/00Manually-controlled or manually-operable label dispensers, e.g. modified for the application of labels to articles
    • B65C11/02Manually-controlled or manually-operable label dispensers, e.g. modified for the application of labels to articles having printing equipment
    • B65C11/0205Manually-controlled or manually-operable label dispensers, e.g. modified for the application of labels to articles having printing equipment modified for the application of labels to articles
    • B65C11/021Manually-controlled or manually-operable label dispensers, e.g. modified for the application of labels to articles having printing equipment modified for the application of labels to articles label feeding from strips
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06KRECOGNITION OF DATA; PRESENTATION OF DATA; RECORD CARRIERS; HANDLING RECORD CARRIERS
    • G06K1/00Methods or arrangements for marking the record carrier in digital fashion
    • G06K1/12Methods or arrangements for marking the record carrier in digital fashion otherwise than by punching
    • G06K1/121Methods or arrangements for marking the record carrier in digital fashion otherwise than by punching by printing code marks
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65CLABELLING OR TAGGING MACHINES, APPARATUS, OR PROCESSES
    • B65C2210/00Details of manually controlled or manually operable label dispensers
    • B65C2210/0002Data entry devices
    • B65C2210/0005Readers
    • B65C2210/0008Optical scanners
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65CLABELLING OR TAGGING MACHINES, APPARATUS, OR PROCESSES
    • B65C2210/00Details of manually controlled or manually operable label dispensers
    • B65C2210/0002Data entry devices
    • B65C2210/0005Readers
    • B65C2210/001Electromagnetical scanners
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65CLABELLING OR TAGGING MACHINES, APPARATUS, OR PROCESSES
    • B65C2210/00Details of manually controlled or manually operable label dispensers
    • B65C2210/0002Data entry devices
    • B65C2210/0013Keyboards; Touchscreens
    • B65C2210/0018Keyboards; Touchscreens permanent
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65CLABELLING OR TAGGING MACHINES, APPARATUS, OR PROCESSES
    • B65C2210/00Details of manually controlled or manually operable label dispensers
    • B65C2210/0002Data entry devices
    • B65C2210/0024Hosts
    • B65C2210/0027Hosts permanent connection
    • B65C2210/0032Hosts permanent connection via RF

Abstract

A system (200) for automated application of tags (930) onto articles (901). The system comprises a. identification means (303) attached to articles; b. handheld stamping gun (210) for applying tags to articles. The system also comprises a remote processing means (221) adapted to match data associated within the identification means (303) with the associated data on tags (930) There is an updatable database (223) which provides data at the time that the tags (930) are stamped to the articles (901).

Description

A SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR THE AUTOMATED APPLICATION OF UP TO DATE

PRICE TAGS

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention generally pertains to a system and method for price tagging.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

JP patent application JP03069437, discloses an automatic label printer comprising a scanning component and a printing component, wherein preloaded prices are ascribed to scanned barcodes, thereby enabling the matching of printed prices with the preloaded information attached to the scanned codes.

US patent 5726431 discloses an apparatus for printing a shelf tag including a portable terminal with barcode scanner in radio communication with a base station, and a portable printer in wireless communication with the portable terminal. The base station provides information indicating legends to be printed upon shelf tags by the printer. This patent specifies communication via a "surface wave acoustic resonator in the portable terminal and an amplifier sequenced hybrid receiver in the printer".

US Patent 5335170 provides a modular system for inventory control having a programmable master module including a display, a keypad, and processing electronics, and a scanning module for reading bar code symbols, where the master module is interconnectable with the scanning module to form a portable scanner for reading and analyzing bar code symbols, and the master module is adapted to interconnect to a plurality of other modules such as a printer module, an interface module, and a suitcase module.

US patent 4727245 provides a printer module for ready attachability to a portable data scanner to form an integrated portable unit. This also is composed of individual units and not a single integrated device, doesn't provide for remote data access, and doesn't provide advanced functions'.

US patent 4652317 discloses a hand held labeler having an integrated processing unit, onboard ROM and RAM memory, optical reader means and printing means, whereby an encoded article may be scanned to provide information to the labeler printing means.

JP patent application 03069437 stores the price information locally and confines itself to the single function of price information. Moreover it risks the price information being updated in the space of time between the last preload and the actual application of prices on the shelf. US 5726431 discloses a device composed of central processing unit in wireless communication with freestanding components, rendering it cumbersome in application. The physical size prohibits its portability. Moreover, the printed labels require manual separation and adhesion, which may result in errors in their placement.

US patent 5335170 discloses, in a preferred embodiment, an inventory control system comprising a printing module in addition to scanning and processing modules. However, the printing module is not adapted for price tag printing. Moreover, the portability of the system composed of a plurality of modules is not enabled.

US patent 5683545 discloses a hand-held labeler for printing and applying labels and for printing tags. The labeler has a keyboard, a display, a scanner, and a battery-containing handle. The labeler is user-friendly and compact. The labeler can be easily loaded with label and tag webs of different widths. The labeler has a discharge chute for the carrier web which can be slid to a position outside the labeler for easy cleaning.

US patent 4652317 and US patent 5683545 integrate scanning, printing and processing means in a single portable hand-held enclosure, however these 'smart' handhelds are technologically complex and costly, they therefore risk malfunction when operated and handled by restocking staff. Moreover, they are not in online communication with price updates on a central computer, rather prices are periodically loaded onto them by wired communication.

It is therefore a long felt need to provide a handheld, integrated bar code scanning and label printing device, which additionally enables the delivery of stock handling and accounting information, wherein said device is not technologically complex or costly, and therefore does not risk malfunction and damage when operated by restocking staff. It is a further long felt need to provide a handheld, integrated bar code scanning and label printing device, that does not risk printing out of date prices due to being updated only periodically with prices.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

It is an object of the present invention to disclose a system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, comprising: identification means attached to, in the vicinity of, or integrated in said articles; handheld stamping gun for applying tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means adapted for obtaining said identification means; tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; and; tag stamping means for dispensing said tag onto said articles; wireless communication means in wired connection with said receiving means, as well as in wired connection with said printing means, and; remote processing means, interconnected to a database consisting of an updated list of identification means information and associated data, in wireless communication with said wireless communication means; wherein said remote processing means is adapted to match data associated within said identification means with said associated data on said tags contained within said database at the time said tags are stamped to said articles.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned tags have minimal price tag dimensions of about 1.8 cm by about 0.9 cm.

It is within the scope of the present invention the above mentioned tag printing means, is a thermal printing means, laser printing means, ink printing means, or a combination thereof.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned wireless communication means is selected from a group consisting of: RF, WIFI, WIMAX, cellular communication, RFID, BLUETOOTH or a combination thereof.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned receiving means is adapted for receiving data encoded in a form selected from a group consisting of: barcodes, electronic tags, RFID tags, PENI tags, chip-less RFID tags, or a combination thereof.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, additionally comprises an audible alert means.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, additionally comprises a visual display means.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, additionally comprises a reset means.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, additionally comprises a peeling means for peeling previous tags.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned tags are printed with degradable ink.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned printing means is adapted for printing a tag comprising an encoding form selected from a group consisting of barcode, electronic tag, product emitting numbering identification (PENI) price tags, RFID tags, or a combination thereof. It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned receiving means is selected from a group consisting of: scanning means, RFID receiving means, chip-less RFID receiving means, product emitting numbering identification (PENI) receiving means, or a combination thereof.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned scanning means is adapted for optical character recognition (OCR).

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned identification means is additionally consisting of information selected from a group consisting of: employee identification information, supplier identification information associated with said articles, warehouse identification information, or a combination thereof.

It is another object of the present invention to disclose an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means adapted for obtaining identification information from identification means attached to, in the vicinity of, or integrated in said articles; price tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the price to be printed; price tag stamping means for dispensing said price tag onto said articles, and; wireless communication means in wired connection with said receiving means, in wired connection with said printing means and in wireless communication with a remote processing means, interconnected to a database consisting of an updated list of correlations between said identification information and data associated with said price tags; wherein said automated price gun is adapted to communicate with said database so as to match said identification information with said data associated with said price tags, contained within said database, at the time said price tags are stamped to said articles.

It is another object of the present invention to disclose an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means adapted for obtaining identification information from identification means attached to, in the vicinity of, or integrated in said articles; price tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; onboard memory means; input/output interface means connected to said receiving means and to said tag printing means, said input/output interface means adapted for downloading and uploading data regarding said identification means from and to said memory, said data consisting of an updated list of correlations between said identification information and data associated with said price tags; and, price tag stamping means for dispensing said tag onto said articles; wherein said automated price gun is adapted to match said identification information with data associated with said price tags, contained within said uploaded data, at the time said price tags are stamped to said articles. It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned receiving means is selected from a group consisting of: scanning means, RFID receiving means, product emitting numbering identification (PENI) receiving means, or a combination thereof.

It is yet another object of the present invention to disclose a method for printing and stamping data tags directly upon articles or shelves having identification means, wherein said data is obtained from a remote processing means, interconnected to a database containing a list of associations between information received from said identification means and said data.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned identification means information is associated with data selected from a group consisting of: price, expiry date, article type, price per unit, production batch number, article weight, article volume, or a combination thereof.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote processing means, interconnected to a database, comprises the steps of: obtaining a system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, comprising: handheld stamping gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means adapted for obtaining said identification means; tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; and; tag stamping means for dispensing said tag onto said articles or shelves; wireless communication means in wired connection with said receiving means, as well as in wired connection with said printing means, and; remote processing means, interconnected to a database consisting of an updated list of identification means and matching data, in wireless communication with said wireless communication means; receiving said identification means information; transmitting said received identification means information by means of said wireless communication means to said remote processing means; processing said received identification information and matching said information associated data stored in said database; receiving by said wireless communication means of said associated data from said remote processing means; conveying said data by means of wired connection to said printing means; printing said conveyed data onto said tag; bringing said stamping gun in contact with the surface of said article or shelf, and; stamping said tag onto said article or shelf.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned associated data is selected from a group consisting of price, expiry date, article type, price per unit, production batch number, article weight, article volume, or a combination thereof It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote additionally comprises a step of peeling previously stamped tags from said articles or shelves.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote additionally comprises a step of alerting the user that identification means has been received.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote additionally comprises a step of displaying said price data on said visual display.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means, additionally comprises a step of resetting said price gun.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means, additionally comprises the steps of entering a user code on said keypad, transmitting said security code to said remote server and restricting access to preauthorized data associated with predetermined identification means and said user code.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means, additionally comprises a step of displaying a menu or list of said preauthorized data associated with predetermined identification means.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means, comprises the additional steps of entering a user code on said keypad, restricting access to preauthorized data associated with predetermined identification means and said user code.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles or shelves having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means, comprising an additional a step of alerting the user said article's sale-by-date has expired.

It is yet another object of the present invention to disclose a method for stock keeping and accounting, comprising the steps of: obtaining an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles or shelves, 'collecting stock from the warehouse;1 setting said price gun to new shelf items setting; stamping collected stock with price tags; counting, automatically by means of said price gun, the amount of stamped items; and, deducting the amount of stamped new shelf items from warehouse stock list, wherein a specially adapted price gun provides stock keeping data as part of the price tag stamping of shelf items.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for stock keeping and accounting, comprises the additional step of receiving identification information from identification means attached to articles or in said articles' vicinity.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for stock keeping and accounting, comprises the additional step of entering the amount of items missing from the shelf.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned that said entering step, in the above mentioned method for stock keeping and accounting, is provided automatically by sales data transmitted from checkout points.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for stock keeping and accounting, comprises an additional step of transmitting said amount of articles missing from shelf, from said price gun to said warehouse.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for stock keeping and accounting, comprises an additional step of automatically generating a purchase order for items deducted from warehouse stock.

It is an object of the present invention to disclose a method for replenishing shelve stock, comprising the steps of: obtaining an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, collecting stock from the warehouse; setting said price gun to new shelf items setting; stamping collected stock with price tags; counting, automatically by means of said price gun, the amount of stamped items; and, deducting the amount of stamped new shelf items from warehouse stock list, wherein a specially adapted price gun provides stock data as part of the price tag stamping of shelf items. It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for replenishing shelve stock, comprises the additional step of receiving identification information from identification means attached to articles or in said articles' vicinity.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for replenishing shelve stock, comprises the additional step of entering the amount of items missing from the shelf.

It is within the scope of the present invention that in the above mentioned method for replenishing shelve stock, the above mentioned entering step is provided automatically by sales data transmitted from checkout points.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for replenishing shelve stock, comprises an additional step of transmitting said amount of articles missing from shelf, from said price gun to said warehouse.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for replenishing shelve stock, comprises an additional step of automatically generating a purchase order for items deducted from warehouse stock.

It is an object of the present invention to disclose a method for managing employees, comprising the steps of: obtaining an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, receiving identification information of the employee that uses said price gun, by said price gun; receiving identification information of the supplier correlated to said shelf items; receiving identification information of the warehouse in which said price tag stamping of shelf items is performed; counting the amount of stamped said price tags performed by said employee; counting the amount of unique said shelf items performed by said employee; and storing time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee, wherein a specially adapted price gun provides employees management data as part of the price tag stamping of shelf items.

It is within the scope of the present invention that' the above mentioned method for managing employees, additionally comprising a step of transmitting the information received in the above mentioned step of counting the amount of stamped said price tags performed by said employee to a warehouse central information system or to a supplier management information system.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for managing employees, additionally comprising a step of transmitting the information received in the above mentioned step of counting the amount of unique said shelf items performed by said employee to a warehouse central information system or to a supplier management information system. It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned method for managing employees, additionally comprising a step of transmitting the information received in the above mentioned step storing time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee to a warehouse central information system or to a supplier management information system.

It is within the scope of the present invention that the above mentioned transmitting step additionally comprising a step of producing a report of said information transmitted, where in said report includes information selected from a group consisting of: said amount of unique said shelf items performed by said employee, said amount of stamped said price tags performed by said employee, said time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee, said time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee is consisting of the time correlated data of the beginning of work and of the end of work of said employee, or a combination thereof.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

In order to better understand the invention and its implementation in practice, a plurality of embodiments will now be described, by way of non-limiting example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings, wherein Fig. 1 schematically illustrates a preferred embodiment of the method for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote processing means, interconnected to a database, of the present invention.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIEMNTS

The following description is provided, alongside all chapters of the present invention, so as to enable any person skilled in the art to make use of said invention and sets forth the best modes contemplated by the inventor of carrying out this invention. Various modifications, however, will remain apparent to those skilled in the art, since the generic principles of the present invention have been defined specifically to provide a means and method for automated application of up-to-date price tags.

In a preferred embodiment of the present invention the handheld stamping gun for applying tags directly onto articles comprises scanning means, printing means, and wireless communication means for transmitting scanned data price queries and receiving corresponding updated prices from a remote server. In this preferred embodiment the price gun does not accumulate or retain data locally, and therefore provides a secure means of administering price data; such that it is not possible to obtain the complete product-price database by theft of said handheld stamping gun.

The term 'product emitting numbering identification' or 'PENI' refers hereinafter to tags attached to articles that are able to communicate information wirelessly in at least one direction.

The term 'Radio-frequency identification' or 'RFID' is an automatic identification method, relying on storing and remotely retrieving data using devices called RFID tags or transponders.

The term 'RFID tag' refers hereinafter to an object that can be applied to or incorporated into a product, animal, or person for the purpose of identification using radio waves. Some tags can be read from several meters away and beyond the line of sight of the reader. Most RFID tags contain at least two parts. One is an integrated circuit for storing and processing information, modulating and demodulating a (RF) signal, and other specialized functions. The second is an antenna for receiving and transmitting the signal.

The term 'Chipless RFID' refers hereinafter to an RFID tag without an integrated circuit, thereby allowing tags to be printed directly onto assets at a lower cost than traditional tags.

Reference is made now to Fig. 1 illustrating preferred embodiment of the method 100 for ensuring that data on tags stamped upon articles having identification means, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote processing means, interconnected to a database, of the present invention, comprising the steps of 101 obtaining a system for automated application of tags directly onto articles, comprising: handheld stamping gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means adapted for obtaining said identification means; tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; and; tag stamping means for dispensing said tag onto said articles; wireless communication means in wired connection with said receiving means, as well as in wired connection with said printing means, and; remote processing means, interconnected to a database consisting of an updated list of identification means and matching data, in wireless communication with said wireless communication means; 103 receiving said identification means information; 105 transmitting said received identification means information by means of said wireless communication means to said remote processing means; 107 processing said received identification information and matching said information associated data stored in said database; 109 receiving by said wireless communication means of said associated data from said remote processing means; 1 1 1 conveying said data by means of wired connection to said printing means; 1 13 printing said conveyed data onto said tag; 115 bringing said stamping gun in contact with the surface of said article, and; 1 17 stamping said tag onto said article. Reference is made now to Fig. 2 illustrating preferred embodiment of the system 200 for automated application of tags 930 directly onto articles 901 while ensuring that data on said tags stamped upon articles having identification means 303, matches data associated with said identification means obtained from a remote processing means 221, interconnected to a database 223, of the present invention, comprising identification means attached to said articles; handheld stamping gun 210 for applying tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means 21 1 adapted for obtaining said identification means; tag printing means 213 adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; and; tag stamping means 215 for dispensing said tag onto said articles; wireless communication means 217 in wired connection with said receiving means, as well as in wired connection with said printing means, and remote processing means, interconnected to a database consisting of an updated list 325 of identification means information 327 and associated data 329, in wireless communication with said wireless communication means.

It is acknowledged in this respect that that said remote processing means is adapted to match data associated within said identification means with said associated data on said tags contained within said database at the time said tags are stamped to said articles.

Reference is made now to Fig. 3 illustrating preferred embodiment of the handheld stamping gun 300 for applying price tags 930 directly onto articles 901, comprising: receiving means 311 adapted for obtaining identification information 327 from identification means 303 attached to said articles; price tag printing means 313 adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; onboard memory means 323; input/output interface 321 means connected to said receiving means and to said tag printing means, said input/output interface means adapted for downloading and uploading data regarding said identification means from and to said memory, said data consisting of an updated list of correlations between said identification information and data associated with said price tags and price tag stamping means 315 for dispensing said tag onto said articles;

It is acknowledged in this respect that that said automated price gun is adapted to match said identification information with data associated with said price tags, contained within said uploaded data, at the time said price tags are stamped to said articles.

Claims

CLAIMS:
1. A system 200 for automated application of tags 930 directly onto articles 901, comprising: a. identification means 303 attached to, in the vicinity of, or integrated in said articles; b. handheld stamping gun 210 for applying tags directly onto articles, comprising: i. receiving means 211 adapted for obtaining said identification means information; ii. tag printing means 213 adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; iii. tag stamping means 215 for dispensing said tag onto said articles; iv. wireless communication means 217 in wired connection with said receiving means, as well as in wired connection with said printing means, and; c. remote processing means 221, interconnected to a database 223 consisting of an updated list 325 of correlations between identification means information 327 and associated data 329, in wireless communication with said wireless communication means; wherein said remote processing means is adapted to match data associated within said identification means with said associated data on said tags contained within said database at the time said tags are stamped to said articles.
2. The system according to claim 1, wherein said identification means is a shelf label.
3. The system according to claim 1, wherein said tags have minimal price tag dimensions of about 1.8 cm by about 0.9 cm.
4. The system according to claim 1, wherein said tag printing means, is a thermal printing means, laser printing means, ink printing means, or a combination thereof.
5. The system according to claim 1, wherein said wireless communication means is selected from a group consisting of: RF, WIFI, WIMAX, cellular communication, RFID, BLUETOOTH, or a combination thereof.
6. The system according to claim 1, wherein said receiving means is adapted for receiving data encoded in a form selected from a group consisting of: barcodes, electronic tags, RFID tags, PENI tags, chip-less RFID tags, or a combination thereof.
7. The system according to claim 1, additionally comprising an audible alert means.
8. The system according to claim 7, wherein said audible alert is a simulated or recorded voice.
9. The system according to claim 1, additionally comprising a visual display means.
10. The system according to claim 1, additionally comprising a reset means.
11. The system according to claim 1 , additionally comprising a peeling means for peeling previous tags.
12. The system according to claim 1, wherein said tags are printed with degradable ink.
13. The system according to claim 1, wherein said printing means is adapted for printing a tag comprising an encoding form selected from a group consisting of barcode, electronic tag, product emitting numbering identification (PENI) price tags, RFID tags, or a combination thereof.
14. The system according to claim 1, wherein said receiving means is selected from a group consisting of: scanning means, RFID receiving means, chip-less RFID receiving means, product emitting numbering identification (PENI) receiving means, or a combination thereof.
15. The system according to claim 14, wherein said scanning means is adapted for optical character recognition (OCR).
16. The system according to claim 1, wherein said identification means is selected from a group consisting of barcodes, electronic tags, RFID tags, PENI tags, chip-less RFID tags, or a combination thereof.
17. The system according to claim 16, where in said identification means information is associated with data selected from a group consisting of: price, expiry date, article type, price per unit, production batch number, article weight, article volume, or a combination thereof.
18. The system according to claim 1 , wherein said handheld stamping gun additionally comprises a user interface means for providing data to and receiving data from, said gun.
19. The system according to claim 18, wherein said user interface is selected from a group consisting of a physical keypad, a touch-virtual keypad, a display, or a combination thereof.
20. The system according to claim 1, wherein said identification means information additionally consists of information selected from a group consisting of: employee identification information, supplier identification information associated with said articles, warehouse identification information, or a combination thereof.
21. An automated price gun 210 for applying price tags 930 directly onto articles 901, comprising: a. receiving means 211 adapted for obtaining identification information 327 from identification means 303 attached to, in the vicinity of, or integrated in said articles; b. price tag printing means 213 adapted for electronic setting of the price to be printed; c. price tag stamping means 215 for dispensing said price tag onto said articles, and; d. wireless communication means 217 in wired connection with said receiving means 211, in wired connection with said printing means 213 and in wireless communication with a remote processing means 221, interconnected to a database 223 consisting of an updated list 325 of correlations between said identification information and data associated 329 with said price tags; wherein said automated price gun is adapted to communicate with said remote database so as to match said identification information with said data associated with said price tags, contained within said database, at the time said price tags are stamped to said articles.
22. An automated price gun 300 for applying price tags 930 directly onto articles 901, comprising: a. receiving means 311 adapted for obtaining identification information 327 from identification means 303 attached to, in the vicinity of, or integrated in said articles; b. price tag printing means 313 adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; c. onboard memory means 323; d. input/output interface 321 means connected to said receiving means and to said tag printing means, said input/output interface means adapted for downloading and uploading data regarding said identification means from and to said memory, said data consisting of an updated list of correlations between said identification information and data associated with said price tags; and, e. price tag stamping means 315 for dispensing said tag onto said articles; wherein said automated price gun is adapted to match said identification information with data associated with said price tags, contained within said uploaded data, at the time said price tags are stamped to said articles.
23. The automated price gun according to claim 21 or 22, wherein said receiving means is selected from a group consisting of: scanning means, RPID receiving means, product emitting numbering identification (PENI) receiving means, or a combination thereof.
24. The automated price gun according to claim 21 or 22, additionally comprising a user interface means for providing data to said gun.
25. The automated price gun according to claim 21 or 22, wherein said identification means is selected from a group consisting of barcodes, electronic tags, RPID tags, PENI tags, chip-less RPID tags, or a combination thereof.
26. The automated price gun according to claim 25, wherein said identification means information is associated with data selected from a group consisting of: price, expiry date, article type, price per unit, production batch number, article weight, article volume, or a combination thereof.
27. A method for printing and stamping data tags directly upon articles or shelves having identification means, wherein said data is obtained from a remote processing means, interconnected to a database containing a list of associations between information received from said identification means and said data.
28. The method according to claim 27, wherein said data is obtained and updated in time frames selected from a group consisting of constant online, periodically, or a combination thereof.
29. The method according to claim 27, wherein said tags are printed with data selected from a group consisting of price, expiry date, article type, price per unit, production batch number, article weight, article volume, or a combination thereof.
30. The method according to claim 27, comprising the steps of a. obtaining a handheld stamping gun for applying price tags directly onto articles or shelves, comprising i. receiving means adapted for obtaining identification means; ii. price tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; iii. onboard memory means; iv. input/output interface means connected to said receiving means and to said tag printing means, said input/output interface means adapted for downloading and uploading data regarding said identification means from and to said memory; and, v. price tag stamping means for dispensing said tag onto said articles or said shelves; b. connecting said input/output interface means to a database containing data associated with a plurality of said identification information; c. uploading said data associated with a plurality of said identification information onto said memory means; d. receiving said identification means information; e. processing said received identification information and matching said information with associated data uploaded into said memory; f. conveying said associated data to said printing means; g. printing said conveyed data onto said tag; h. bringing said stamping gun in contact with the surface of said article or shelf and; i. stamping said tag onto said article or said shelf.
31. The method according to claim 27, comprising the steps of a. obtaining a system for automated application of tags directly onto articles or shelves, comprising: i. handheld stamping gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, comprising: receiving means adapted for obtaining identification means; tag printing means adapted for electronic setting of the data to be printed; and; tag stamping means for dispensing said tag onto said articles; wireless communication means in wired connection with said receiving means, as well as in wired connection with said printing means, and: ii. remote processing means, interconnected to a database consisting of an updated list of identification means and matching data, in wireless communication with said wireless communication means; b. receiving said identification means information; c. transmitting said received identification means information by means of said wireless communication means to said remote processing means; d. processing said received identification information and matching said information associated data stored in said database; e. receiving by said wireless communication means of said associated data from said remote processing means; f. conveying said data by means of wired connection to said printing means; g. printing said conveyed data onto said tag; h. bringing said stamping gun in contact with the surface of said article, or said shelf and; i. stamping said tag onto said article or said shelf.
32. The method according to claim 27, wherein said associated data is selected from a group consisting of price, expiry date, article type, price per unit, production batch number, article weight, article volume, or a combination thereof.
33. The method according to claim 27, comprising an additional step of peeling previously stamped tags from said articles.
34. The method according to claim 27, additionally comprising a step of alerting the user that identification means has been received.
35. The method according to claim 27, additionally comprising a step of displaying said associated data on a visual display.
36. The method according to claim 27, additionally comprising a step of displaying a pop up message on said display indicating a change in the data associated with said received identification information.
37. The method according to claim 27, additionally comprising a step of resetting said price gun.
38. The method according to claim 27, wherein said handheld stamping gun additionally comprises a user interface means for providing data to said gun, comprising the additional steps of entering a user code on said keypad, transmitting said security code to said remote server and restricting access to preauthorized data associated with predetermined identification means and said user code.
39. The method according to claim 38, comprising an additional step of displaying a menu or list of said preauthorized data associated with predetermined identification means.
40. The method according to claim 27, wherein said handheld stamping gun additionally comprises a user interface means for providing data to said gun, comprising the additional steps of entering a user code on said keypad, restricting access to preauthorized data associated with predetermined identification means and said user code.
41. The method according to claim 27, additionally comprising a step of alerting the user said article's sale-by-date has expired.
42. A method for stock keeping and accounting, comprising the steps of: a. obtaining an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, b. collecting stock from the warehouse; c. setting said price gun to new shelf items setting; d. stamping collected stock with price tags; e. updating stock keeping data wherein said step of updating comprises counting, automatically by means of said price gun, the amount of stamped items; and, deducting the amount of stamped new shelf items from warehouse stock list; thereby providing updated stock keeping data contemporaneously with price tag stamping of shelf items.
43. The method according to claim 42, comprising the additional step of receiving identification information from identification means attached to articles or in said articles' vicinity.
44. The method according to claim 42, comprising the additional step of entering the amount of items missing from the shelf.
45. The method according to claim 44, wherein said entering step is provided automatically by sales data transmitted from checkout points.
46. The method according to claim 42, comprising an additional step of transmitting said amount of articles missing from shelf, from said price gun to said warehouse.
47. The method according to claim 42, comprising an additional step of automatically generating a purchase order for items deducted from warehouse stock.
48. A method for replenishing shelve stock, comprising the steps of: a. obtaining an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, b. collecting stock from the warehouse; c. setting said price gun to new shelf items setting; d. stamping collected stock with price tags; e. updating stock replenishing data; wherein said step of updating comprises counting, automatically by means of said price gun, the amount of stamped items; and, deducting the amount of stamped new shelf items from warehouse stock list; thereby providing updated stock replenishment data contemporaneously with price tag stamping of shelf items.
49. The method according to claim 48, comprising the additional step of receiving identification information from identification means attached to articles or in said articles' vicinity.
50. The method according to claim 48, comprising the additional step of entering the amount of items missing from the shelf.
51. The method according to claim 50, wherein said entering step is provided automatically by sales data transmitted from checkout points.
52. The method according to claim 48, comprising an additional step of transmitting said amount of articles missing from shelf, from said price gun to said warehouse.
53. The method according to claim 48, comprising an additional step of automatically generating a purchase order for items deducted from warehouse stock.
54. A method for managing employees, comprising the steps of: a. obtaining an automated price gun for applying price tags directly onto articles, b. receiving identification information of the employee that uses said price gun, by said price gun; c. receiving identification information of the supplier correlated to said shelf items; d. receiving identification information of the warehouse in which said price tag stamping of shelf items is performed; e. update employees management data; wherein said step of updating comprises counting the amount of stamped said price tags performed by said employee; the amount of unique said shelf items performed by said employee; and, storing time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee; thereby providing updated employees management data contemporaneously with price tag stamping of shelf items.
55. The method according to claim 54, additionally comprising a step of transmitting the information received in said step (e) or in said step (f) or in said step (g) to a warehouse central information system.
56. The method according to claim 54, additionally comprising a step of transmitting the information received in said step (e) or in said step (f) or in said step (g) to a supplier management information system.
57. The method according to claim 55 or claim 56, additionally comprising a step of producing a report of said information transmitted in step (h).
58. The method according to claim 57, wherein said step of producing a report consisting of said amount of unique said shelf items performed by said employee.
59. The method according to claim 57, wherein said step of producing a report consisting of said amount of stamped said price tags performed by said employee.
60. The method according to claim 57, wherein said step of producing a report consisting of said time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee.
61. The method according to claim 60, wherein said time correlated data of said stamping of shelf items performed by said employee is consisting of the time correlated data of the beginning of work and of the end of work of said employee.
PCT/IL2009/000959 2008-10-06 2009-10-11 A system and method for the automated application of up to date price tags WO2010041250A1 (en)

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