This Week in Imaging: More on the Production-Print Market; Sharp Seeks Help from Lenders; New High-Volume Toshiba MFPs

icy trees

Photo credit: Kathy Wirth

Last week, we discussed the state of the production-printing industry as it relates to inkjet technology (see here). This week, we have some interesting news from International Data Corporation (IDC), which reports that the worldwide production-printing market enjoyed double-digit gains in fourth-quarter 2014. The sweet spot in the production-print market appears to be color, with monochrome-laser production-printer shipments declining by 5.9 percent. While production-print inkjet shipment growth still hasn’t matched color-laser production-print shipments, production-print inkjet shipments did still enjoy a healthy 27.9 percent increase in fourth-quarter 2015.

This reflects the fact that while home and consumer printing is declining, and office printing has slowed, the printing of packaging materials and support collaterals has not. Hence the growth of production printing, especially inkjet-based printers that can more-economically accommodate a wider range of substrates at higher production rates than their toner-based counterparts, and is growing particularly strong in the continuous-feed production-print segment. We once had the opportunity to travel to Venlo, Netherlands, and Poing, Germany, to get see Océ’s impressive line of big iron. Since then, Océ has been acquired by Canon, with Océ adding significant clout, credibility and expertise to the upper end of Canon’s product line. Consequently, it appears that Canon made a smart move, and is enjoying the fruits of its long-term vision (this week, for instance, IDC also reported that Canon had the largest market share in the U.S. cut-sheet production-printing market). On the other hand, we still see a place for high-speed toner-based monochrome printing, as it’s particularly economical and useful for the printing of support collaterals. It’s also a technology that most office-equipment dealers are intimately familiar with and can readily sell and service without the help of “specialists.”

In spite of a product line that features a healthy mix of SOHO business-class products, Brother keeps cranking out the goods while getting minimal attention from the press. This week the company released four new advanced document scanners and have promised us an ADW-2500We test unit, which will arrive next week. Be sure to stay tuned to our Web site for a Hands-On review and test report.

Production-Printing News

  • Worldwide Production-Print Market Enjoys Double-Digit Growth in Fourth-Quarter 2014 – Read more here.
  • IDC: Canon is Market Leader in U.S. Cut-Sheet Production-Print Market – Read more here.

Office-Product News

  • Three New High-Volume Monochrome A3 Printer/Copiers from Toshiba – Read more here.
  • Four New Brother Document Scanners with Cloud Connectivity, Kofax Certification – Read more here.
  • Brother Teams up with PrinterOn to Offer PrintSmart Mobile, PrintSmart Mobile Zone – Read more here.

Other News

  • Sharp President to Ask for More Funds from Lenders – Read more here.
  • OKI to Demo New MFPs for BTA Channel, Light-Production Print Devices at ITEX Show – Read more here.

People

  • DocuWare’s Schloemer Retires; New Co-Presidents are Biffar and Schneck – Read more here.
  • Horikawa Promoted to Deputy President of OKI Data Americas – Read more here.

Other News

  • Ninestar, Seine Agree Not to Sell Disputed Toner Cartridges and Drums in U.S. – Read more here.

The Third Dimension

3D-Printed Cities: Is this the Future?

3D-Printing Trends for March 2015


MakerBot Makes it Easy for Schools and Businesses to Break Into 3D Printing

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