It won't be the paperless office many once thought possible, but it may be the next best thing. With Toshiba's new erasable ink, the green at heart can have their paper without the guilt. The company's new "e-Blue" erasing machine uses heat treatment to remove words and images printed with erasable toner on 400 to 500 A4 pages at a time. The process takes three hours, and will allow companies to re-use paper and cut office waste. "Despite new tools like e-mail and the development of all sorts of wireless technologies, people still like to have things on paper," said Toshiba spokesman Jun'ichi Nagaki. "We don't think demand for paper will ever disappear completely."
Toshiba will launch the toner and erasing machine, which will retail for around 300,000 yen (about 23,000 yuan), on December 8 in Japan. It is targeting corporate clients and paper-shuffling public-sector organizations that use laser printers. For the old-fashioned, the company will also offer erasable ballpoint pens and markers.
Paper accounts for about 40 percent of office waste in Japan, Toshiba says. About 60 percent of that is recycled.