InfoTrends Sees Sweet Spot In Color Business Ink-Jet, Solid-Ink Market

colorqube 8700_8900 ink blocksWhile market-research firm InfoTrends is forecasting a decline in overall hardware revenues throughout 2014, it’s also forecasting healthy growth rates for color ink-jet and laser placements, which it expects to continue to grow throughout 2014.  In total, the firm expects a 6.1 compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for the period (excluding consumer, print-on-demand, and impact segments).

At the same time, the prospects for business color ink-jet/solid-ink look promising, with the firm forecasting a a CAGR of 5.8 percent throughout 2014 in the United States.  The principal players in the business ink-jet/solid-ink segments include Hewlett-Packard, Epson, Canon, and Xerox.

Robert Palmer, director of InfoTrends Digital Peripherals Consulting Service, noted something that we’ve observed at Wirth Consulting—color ink cost per page tends to be lower than that of color laser systems, and ink systems also tend to have lower acquisition prices, “Whether it is based on liquid ink or solid ink, the ink-jet imaging platform offers a number of compelling attributes to address barriers limiting the penetration of color in the office.   Namely, ink-based systems could deliver color at lower operating costs, which is without question the leading customer concern when it comes to the production of color pages. As a result, we expect ink-based technologies to gain further traction through the forecast period.  Ink-jet technologies not only bring the promise of lower operating costs, but also lower acquisition prices (compared to color-laser technology).  This is a value proposition that resonates with small businesses looking for affordable quality color devices.”

Presumably alluding to Memjet page-width ink-jet printing—see here for the first Memjet color ink-jet office printers—Palmer continued, “In addition, page-wide inkjet technology will further improve the price and performance value of ink-jet, which will result in the increased penetration of ink-based printers and MFPs in the traditional workgroup space.”

InfoTrends’ data is derived from its Single Function Printer & MFP Market Forecast Analysis, which provides an overview and analysis of market trends within the U.S. printer and MFP market between the 2009-2014 forecast period.  Information is presented by environment, as well as traditional market categorization by speed segment.  For more information, visit InfoTrend’s online store

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