1. Home Brother
  2. About Brother
  3. Latest News and Press releases
  4. 2023
  5. Brother celebrates 35 years of label printing

Brother celebrates 35 years of label printing


Brother is celebrating a milestone 35 years of label printing this September. The business technology solutions provider entered the market with the popular P-touch label printer – and over three decades later it is still a must-have for many businesses.

From labelling files and folders to creating asset tags and office signage, people are increasingly using label printing in their day-to-day roles. This includes clerical staff and receptionists to HR professionals, IT workers and finance.  And the P-touch range now enables them to work from anywhere.

Independent research* conducted on behalf of Brother, reveals that the use of label printers has increased since 2019 and a third of people expect to do more labelling in the next three years.

The increase is coming from growing applications such as asset and inventory tagging using barcodes and QR codes, as well as cabling in the office and workplace due to the rise of video and conferencing equipment and shared office spaces.

To celebrate, Brother looks back at the changing office environment over the last 35 years and how we have provided label printing solutions every step of the way.

Brother and the Changing Office Environment  

The office environment has changed dramatically since the 1980s.

Think big clunky computers and the whir of fax machines to send and receive important documents.

It was also the decade when the PC started to gain popularity, a moment which would change the workplace forever. Corporate culture dominated at the time with longer working hours and the expectation of formal attire in the office.

In 1988, Brother launched the P-touch label printer to assist with office tasks. The classic PT-6 was the world’s first handheld electronic labelling machine, producing durable labels to help organise the office environment.


The 1990s was a decade of connectivity with the World Wide Web made publicly available. It was also a time of floppy disks, early mobile phones, and a move towards more open plan offices.

Moving with the times, Brother launched the first keyboard model of the P-touch label printer in 1990.  


By the turn of the millennium, the traditional office environment was disrupted by millennials entering the workforce.

As such the 2000s were a time of evolution in the way people worked. Technology and high-speed connectivity became a must-have in the office, and communication ramped up with the smartphone coming to the mass market.

To keep up with business needs, Brother launched the first rechargeable model of the P-touch label printer. This was followed by the first address label printer in 2004.
By the 2010s, office culture is one of collaboration, community, and equality. There is also a boom in the number of start-ups leading to the emergence of co-working spaces.

Staying on trend, Brother brought labels to your smartphone, making them more accessible. By 2018, Brother offered full colour label printing.

The last decade has seen the office environment change beyond recognition with employees now empowered to ‘work from anywhere’. And the P-touch range reflects this.

P-touch Range Today

The P-touch label printer is one of today’s best-known labelling brands. In fact, the top three reasons cited for using Brother label tapes centre on quality, compatibility, and reliability.

Brother has evolved the range over the last 35 years to provide businesses with the functionality needed to adapt to a changing working environment.

From small compact handheld and desktop models to connectable models which allow you to print labels from your smartphone or tablet using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, the Brother P-touch range offers something for every business.

For more information on how the P-Touch range can support your business, visit the Brother website.

*The research was conducted by Qual Street and Sharp Research between October 2022 and February 2023 in the UK, France and Germany with office environment label printer users and purchasers. In total, 817 were surveyed and 45 were interviewed about their business, their printers and labelling, and their purchasing behaviours.
Brother P-touch desktop range