Normally, when we talk about printers, we’re talking about machines that transfer consumables, usually ink or toner, to paper. Today, though, we’re talking about a much different type of printer—machines that don’t use ink, toner, or any other type of consumable, such as dye sublimation, foil, or 3-D. We’re talking thermal printers.
The only consumable a thermal printer needs is paper—special “thermosensitive” paper, to be sure, but all you need is paper just the same.
While this is convenient, and as you’ll soon see, there are many applications; it also has its drawbacks, making it suitable for only specific types of printing. Even so, as demonstrated in this About.com “Leitz Icon Smart Labelling System” article, the breadth of possible applications is extensive.
Read the entire article at About.com