New Standard Aims to Simplify 3D Printing Process

Christine Dunne and Ron Gilboa
May 4, 2015

Last week, it was announced that seven leading companies in the global 3D printing sector have launched a new consortium—the 3MF Consortium—focused on interoperability, functionality, and standards within the 3D printing industry.

The 3MF Consortium’s Logo

As a first step, the consortium is releasing a new specification—the 3D Manufacturing Format (3MF) specification—that enables design applications to send “full-fidelity” 3D models to other applications, platforms, services, and printers. The first version of the specification is free, and available for download on the consortium’s website.

According to the press release announcing the news, current 3D design file formats—such as STL files—often have limitations around accuracy, ease of use, and functionality. They aren’t necessarily capable of fully describing models and all their characteristics. Read more »

Ricoh and Sharp Announce New Plans to Bring IT Services to the Channel

Brendan Morse
May 1, 2015

 

Ricoh Americas Corporation and Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America (SIICA) announced new additions to their channel programs this week; both targeted to help their dealers provide IT services.  Ricoh’s program named CHAMPS will offer what is being branded as Cloud IT Services, which will be available exclusively for Ricoh Family Group dealer partners in the US. This is made possible through Ricoh’s 2014 acquisition of mindSHIFT. Sharp is going the partnership route by naming Continuum, a channel-only IT platform and services provider, as a Strategic Alliance Member. While not exclusive, this is the first such partnership between an OEM and a company like Continuum in the US.

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Organizing a Lifetime of Photos

Ed Lee
Apr 30, 2015

Recently, a review called The Best Way to Organize a Lifetime of Photos
appeared in the Wall Street Journal. The author, Geoffrey Fowler, compared five offerings: Apple Photos, Shoebox, Lyve, Mylio, and Adobe Lightroom. In the article, he gives his impressions of each service and their pluses and minuses. Ultimately, the author decides that Lightroom is best for him.

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HP Decides to Cut Bait with Snapfish

Michael Whalen
Apr 29, 2015

Given the choice to either “Snapfish” or cut bait, Hewlett-Packard has chosen the latter.

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Production placement growth in 2014 – but watch the segments

Ralf Schlozer

InfoTrends just published the 2014 production placement numbers for the U.S. and Western Europe. In both geographies we had some growth in placements. In general Europe showed a much better growth driven by a stabilizing economy in 2014, while growth in the U.S. was marginal, based on the fears of a slowing economy. Of course growth rates differ not only by geography, but also by product segment. One of the fastest growing segments in 2014 were mid-volume color devices, the type of devices typically used at high-end print rooms or quick printers and small to mid-size commercial printers. Installations grew by 29% in the U.S. and 33% in Europe in 2014. This is no mean feat in print market under pressure.

2008 to 2014 Mid-production Placements


For a meaningful tracking of growth or decline in a market, as well as market share overviews, we try to define market segments containing products that compete against each other with similar features, price points and user profiles. Segmenting products can be a tough task however.

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Xerox Evolving in 2015 with New Product Announcements

Allison Correia and Brendan Morse
Apr 28, 2015

Xerox, a leader in document technology and services, today announced several new solutions and services that will add to their history of innovation. Xerox’s Large Enterprise Operations (LEO) is aligning its services offering by key vertical market to connect MPS & BPO. Read more »

Kofax Lands $2.4 Million Deal

Allison Correia
Apr 24, 2015

Despite the proposed acquisition of Kofax by Lexmark, Kofax is going about business as usual with the recent announcement of a $2.4 million deal with a leading U.S. financial services firm. Just days ago, Kofax, a leading provider of smart process applications that simplify the business critical First Mile of information-intensive customer interactions, announced that an undisclosed leading U.S. bank has invested in Kofax TotalAgility to automate their banking operations including new customer onboarding, and loan application processing. Read more »

Google’s “Mobilegeddon” and the Importance of Mobile-Friendly Web Design

Jason Cardona

This week, Google made changes to its mobile search algorithm, an event which the public dubbed “Mobilegeddon.” In the new algorithm, Google considers whether a website is “mobile-friendly” in ranking search results. Mobilegeddon is a wake-up call for many businesses that have either neglected mobile design or are not even aware that their websites are poorly designed.

Photo via Inturact

While the new algorithm only affects searches on smartphones, businesses cannot afford to lose out on mobile, which already accounts for 60% of U.S. digital media time.[1] Earlier this year, comScore reported that mobile search accounts for 29% of all U.S. search activity, and 20% of that comes from smartphones. Various estimates put Google around 65-75% search market share, with 80-90% share in mobile search (thanks in large part to the Android OS). In fact, about half of all Google searches are believed to be mobile searches. Despite the apocalyptic hype around Mobilegeddon, this is neither the first nor the last update to Google’s algorithm. It is, however, the most significant update since 2011, when Google Panda began factoring the quality of web pages into search rank.  Read more »

Highlights of Xploration 15, the Customer Communications Conference

David Stabel and Matt Swain
Apr 23, 2015

Last week, customer communications conference Xploration 15 hosted around 350 participants in Orlando, Florida. This annual conference is a major industry event with more than 60 educational sessions for vendors, service providers, and enterprise attendees.

The educational sessions covered a broad range of CCM topics including workflow and automation-related technology, e-presentment and payment technology and innovation, hosted/cloud managed models, as well as strategy considerations for outsourcing versus maintaining in-house operations. InfoTrends hosted two sessions that covered a review of highlights from our annual customer communications research, and insights on the importance of CCM in an increasing connected world.

Read more »

Lines Blur As Cameras Get Smaller

Alan Bullock
Apr 21, 2015

It’s an interesting time for the photo industry. Cameras continue to get better, faster, less expensive, and, perhaps most significantly, smaller. These devices are taking pictures of everything from scenery to sports, capturing life’s moments from new points of view, from vantage points that were very difficult just a few years ago. Read more »

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