Move Over Millennials… It’s Time to Think About Generation Z!

Eve Padula
Mar 13, 2017

Over the past several years, marketers across all industries and categories have become obsessed with Millennials—what are the best ways to reach them and help them form meaningful connections with brands? Because Millennials have a unique sense of self and a non-traditional approach to life stages, marketing to this captivating generation has been a challenge. Marketers are only just beginning to understand Millennials, but there’s a whole new game in town with the rise of Generation Z. This is the first generation of consumers that was born into a digital world, and these individuals don’t know life without the Internet, smartphones, tablets, and social media. What are the best ways to engage with this up-and-coming and always-on generation?

Although generational start and end dates are imprecise, Millennials—also called Generation Y—generally include those individuals born between the early 1980s and the mid-1990s. Meanwhile, Generation Z individuals—also called Post-Millennials or the iGeneration—were born after 1995. As yet, there is little consensus about ending birth years for this group. Millennials were coming into young adulthood at the turn of the century, and the oldest of this group are now about 35. Some have been in the workforce for quite some time and have already begun to reshape Corporate America. The oldest Gen Z individuals are only beginning to graduate from high school/college and enter the professional workforce, so only time will tell what changes this group will bring to the workforce of tomorrow. Gen Zers may be too young to have affected the workplace as yet, but they are already having a profound impact on family purchasing habits and the retail marketplace.

In January 2017, IBM and the National Retail Foundation released a report entitled Uniquely Generation Z: What Brands Should Know About Today’s Youngest Consumers. This report surveyed over 15,000 Gen Z individuals between the ages of 13 and 21 and also conducted interviews with 20 Senior Marketing Executives to determine how these consumers engage with brands. As this generation continues to come of age, they will have a major impact on future communication strategies. Read more »

A look at the 2017 Digital Solutions Cooperative (DSCOOP) and Jetcomm!

Pat McGrew
Mar 10, 2017

Pat McGrew
Director, Production Workflow

The HP Digital Solutions Cooperative (Dscoop) has been a mainstay of event calendars for Indigo users for more than a decade. Over the past few years HP has moved to include users of their other print technologies, including Scitex, DesignJet and PageWide Web Press. While in past years the HP PageWide Web Press team held their Jetcomm event in advance of Dscoop, this year the Jetcomm sessions were integrated into the main Dscoop agenda alongside tracks dedicated to Business & Leadership, Operations, Sales & Marketing, and Technology & Innovation.

Dscoop is part tradeshow and part education event, with an agenda that included A-List keynotes and mentalist Lior Suchard as emcee. The sessions were the expected array of customer success stories, successful selling solutions and product reviews, but there were also a variety of sessions covering finishing, packaging and 3D printing, all of which rank highly in KeyPoint Intelligence / InfoTrends surveys as target expansion opportunities for print service providers (PSP). Read more »

Mal Baboyian and the New Canon Océ Colorado 1640

Jim Hamilton

Mal Baboyian has 45 years of industry experience, an extremely long job title, and a lot of responsibility at Canon. He’s the Senior Vice President of Canon U.S.A.’s Business Imaging Solutions Group for Océ Product Marketing and Support. This covers a wide range of Océ-branded products, including two exciting new devices: the ProStream continuous-feed color inkjet printer and the Colorado 1640 64″ wide format UVgel roll-to-roll printer. This week at the One Canon press/analyst event in Boca Raton, Florida was the worldwide unveiling of the Colorado 1640 and Baboyian thinks it is Océ’s most important wide format graphic arts product introduction in 25 years. To say that he’s excited about this product would be an understatement—and this is a man who has seen quite a few wide format products. For one, he has helped Canon Océ to reach 6,000 unit placements worldwide in the very successful Arizona product line.

Here’s a quick summary of why Baboyian is so excited about the 1640. First off, it is very fast and quite affordable (MSRP, $58,000). Ink consumption and overall running costs are projected to be at quite attractive levels. In addition, the new Canon-developed UVgel inks have a large color CMYK gamut, give off little or no odor, dry immediately, and use low-temperature LED curing. Some very innovative supply and quality control features (to be explained shortly) top off the list.

Canon Océ Colorado 1640

Canon Océ Colorado 1640

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Sprint Vector may have Solved VR’s Motion Problem

Colin McMahon
Mar 9, 2017

Sprint Vector, dubbed an adrenaline platformer, appears to have solved one of the issues that has been plaguing virtual reality (VR) experiences: movement. Until now, running in VR often produced disorientation and nausea. To combat this issue, many current experiences are designed with the user in a constant sitting position, or possessing limited means to “teleport” around an environment. Sprint Vector takes a different approach:

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Next Up for Vendor Shows: Xeikon Café in Belgium

Bob Leahey
Mar 8, 2017

At this time of year vendors and users of digital print technology have a spate of events that qualify as vendor-specific tradeshows, ones hosted or sponsored by individual equipment suppliers. Among the best known are two that just took place, namely Hunkeler Innovation Days (February 20-23 in Lucerne) and Dscoop (March 1-4 in Phoenix, Arizona, for HP users). A third event, coming soon, is a pure play in digitally printed packaging and well worth visiting—the Xeikon Café that will take place in Belgium on March 27-30.

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Highlights of GMC Software’s European Events

David Stabel and Matt Swain
Mar 3, 2017

GMC Software (GMC), a Neopost Digital Company, recently hosted two events in Europe. On February 14th, it held its first EMEA analyst summit in Paris, France. The following weekend, it hosted its Service Providers Executive Advisory on Lake Lucerne in Switzerland. InfoTrends was invited to participate in both events.

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The EMEA analyst summit included discussions around GMC’s latest major product release, R11, the future state of customer communications technology, and GMC’s future strategy. In addition to presentations of Henri Dura, COO at Neopost Enterprise Digital Services (EDS), Scott Draeger, VP Product Marketing at EDS, and several other product managers at GMC, there was ample opportunity for 1:1 networking with the leadership team.

As for the executive advisory board, GMC did a great job of pulling together a group of 13 service providers and 15 representatives from various countries in Europe, Latin America, and Asia Pacific. Attendees received updates from leadership at GMC on enhancements to the offering, discussed market disruption and service expansion opportunities during the session, as well as shared best practices and provided input on how GMC can continue to evolve its offering to best support their future needs.

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ALTANA Acquires Landa Metallography Technology

James Hanlon
Feb 28, 2017

 

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Landa Group announced on February 21 that Germany-based ALTANA AG has acquired its metallography technology, which Landa first showed at drupa 2016. Landa, the Israeli developer of the trademarked Nanography jetting technology, demonstrated at drupa its metallography system, which is in effect a digital foiling based on jetting. ALTANA, a German chemical company, has four divisions, two of which are major suppliers of metallic print and print enhancement, namely Eckart (metallic printing inks) and Actega (coatings for packaging). The deal thus links Landa with a company well positioned to commercialize Landa’s digital foiling concept.

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ITI Uses VR to Re-invent Industrial Training

Colin McMahon
Feb 24, 2017

Industrial Training International (ITI), along with software developer Serious Labs, has created the virtual reality (VR) mobile crane simulator to re-invent industrial training. The companies are working on a hardware-based system that will be available in two versions, desktop and motion-base. Both configurations use an oculus rift headset, a laptop, and two anchored controllers (a total of four joysticks) to recreate the training experience. For example, it can be used to recreate the operation of a massive construction crane.

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Canon targeting commercial print with the Océ ProStream

Ralf Schlozer
Feb 21, 2017

Continuous feed colour inkjet has put its mark onto digital print for a number of years now, but it has been slow to escape the confines of transactional printing, despite some success in direct mail and book printing. While transaction print is set to decline, the much more attractive market would be moving into commercial print and converting portions of the immense offset print volume to digital. That is easier said than done however, with the demands for print quality and paper range being much higher in commercial print, compared to transaction print. Several devices have been launched to target this market, but success so far has been limited.

With its latest announcement on the 17th of February Canon plans to take advantage of this opportunity with a new product called Océ ProStream. The ProStream supports a print width of 540 mm, a maximum speed of 80 metres per minute, and a duty cycle of 35 million A4 pages per month. The printer is targeted to offer high print quality on a large range of substrates. Canon cites four major reasons why the ProStream should finally be able to gain a larger portion of the commercial print market:

– New 1,200 nozzle per inch Kyocera piezo drop-on-demand inkjet heads

– A new high-density polymer-based ink system – including ColorGrip primer

– A new, non-contact “flotation air” drying system

– A new usability concept supporting native PDF and PDF/VT Read more »

Digitization of Banks: A Shift from Back-end to Front-end Thinking

David Stabel
Feb 16, 2017

In the age of enterprise digitization and increasing competition within the banking industry–from established players to disruptive outsiders–banks are accelerating the modernization of their customer communications technologies. Key strategic goals often associated with this technology overhaul include customer experience improvement and operational efficiency as our 2016 customer communications technology enterprise research shows. Banking respondents of this research cite that improving customer experience is the number one business objective relative to invest in this technology, followed closely by improving the efficiency of front office employees.

Trying to implement these goals has proven to be a big challenge. Accumulated IT systems over the last generation created a legacy IT architecture—including siloed point solutions, custom integrations, and self-developed scripts—inhibiting innovation in this area for keeping up with new digital competition. That said, we are also seeing successful initiatives as this case of DZ BANK AG (DZB) in Europe.

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DZB is the third largest bank in Germany and is headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. The company is conducting a multi-year digitalization project within its corporate banking strategic business unit (SBU). InfoTrends had the opportunity to be briefed on this initiative.

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