The annual PDN PhotoPlus Conference & Expo (PPE) was held October 24-27, 2012 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City. Since, several of the leading companies in the photo industry have U.S. headquarters in the New York metropolitan area, the PhotoPlus Expo is a great “home show” for many industry insiders. PPE draws a healthy contingent from the surrounding metropolitan region and has become a “go to” event. The show drew nearly 24,000 attendees and 250+ exhibitors filled the exhibit hall floor.
With the continued business and consumer migration to digital communications, Australia Post is the latest post to offer a digital mail consolidation service. Using the Volly secure digital delivery service from Pitney Bowes as its technology platform, Australia Post has spent the last seven months integrating and customizing it to provide a user experience specifically tailored for the Australian market. Read more »
On October 30th, Hewlett-Packard (HP) announced the upcoming availability of its first desktop page-wide inkjet devices–the HP Officejet Pro X series–as well as a new line of laser workflow multifunctional peripherals (MFPs) and associated solutions. All of the products are targeted toward the business market. From a hardware and supplies perspective, we believe the development in page-wide technology (officially known as HP’s “PageWide Technology”) has the most potential to create disruption within this market. The office market has traditionally been dominated by laser-based technology, but the introduction of page-wide inkjet devices with robust speed, print quality, and paper handling capabilities from a market leader like HP could really change how customers view inkjet technology.
I’ve recorded two videos with a visual commentary on Graph Expo. One is a print sample video and the other looks at some of the ‘loot’ that an industry analyst like myself might come away from the show with (pens, mugs, thumb drives, books, etc.)
The print sample video includes examples from EFI, Graph-Tech, Heidelberg, HP, Kodak, Konica Minolta, MGI, Pitney Bowes, Scodix, and Xerox. Obviously this is just a small selection of samples from the show floor. If there are others you think I’ve overlooked, please send them my way (Jim Hamilton, InfoTrends, 97 Libbey Industrial Parkway, Weymouth, MA 02189).
The other video is not really about print, though virtually all of the items have a printed component. Instead they tell the story of what some of the exhibitors are doing to promote their brands.
If you’d like to see other Jim Hamilton videos, please check out the Jim Hamilton YouTube channel. Here you’ll find a selection of my print sample videos as well as videos that have been recorded at various industry events.
Last week’s announcement that the print edition of Newsweek magazine would cease at the end of 2012 shined a spotlight on the digital disruption that has accelerated business transformation for traditional publishers. It’s not like magazine publishers have their head in the sand; for over a decade, they have been forging ahead in a digital direction, trying a variety of strategies and tactics to grow their digital audience, increase online ad revenue, and monetize their content. Nevertheless, the sheer velocity of transformation in the last few years has forced magazine publishers of all sizes (and media companies in general) to be much more agile and innovative.
Magazines clearly remain an attractive outlet for advertisers, especially as digital channels attract new audiences and provide engaging andÂ measurableÂ advertising experiences. To that point, the Association of Magazine Media (MPA) recently released research conducted by Kantar Media highlighting that the number of brands advertising in magazine media–including print, web, and tablet channels–grew from just over 9,500 in the first half of 2010 to almost 15,000 in the first half of 2012. Advertisers value magazine media, especially as it extends to more interactive, data-rich channels. Read more »
liveBooks, a leader in providing web services (websites, blog solutions, mobile sites, etc.) to professional photographers for years, has made a major change in their product portfolio by acquiring Pinhole Pro and Pinhole Press from Mohawk. The acquisition will give liveBooks pro photographer clients the option of offering high-quality output to their customers and will allow liveBooks to compete more directly with companies like Mpix and SmugMug (among others) that offer both portfolio and output services.
Every year InfoTrends publishes a Personal Photo Activity Forecast for the U.S. which includes the number of photos that are captured. In 2012 InfoTrends estimates that 89 billion images will be captured in the US. We estimate that around 63 billion images will be captured in Western Europe this year.Â Read more »
Naming a new product category is always a challenge. The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) appears to have its act together when it comes to high-definition televisions, unlike the digital camera industry, which has failed to standardize on a name for Compact Interchangeable Lens Cameras (Read The Difficulties of Choosing a Name blog from earlier this year) Â which has hindered the development of the segment, in our opinion.
As of October 18th, the “4K” term will now be known as “Ultra-High Definition.” According to the new rules from CEA the minimum requirement for a television or projector to earn the “Ultra HD” designation is having a resolution of at least 8 million active pixels (3,840 x 2,160 minimum). Displays must also have an aspect ratio of at least 16 x 9 and a digital input capable of carrying native 4K video. Don’t get too excited about Ultra HD televisions just yet. Initial 84-inch offerings from LG Electronics and Sony will cost about $20,000 and $25,000, respectively. Read more »
Newsweek, the venerableÂ 79-year-old weekly magazine announced it will discontinue its print edition to become digital-only by the end of the year. The publication has been struggling for years with circulation dropping from over 4 million in 2003 to around 1.5 million in 2012. By my estimate the decision will eliminate approximately 5 billion 8.5×11 equivalent pages from the printing industry and 79 million pieces of mail per year.
Tina Brown, Newsweek’s editor-in-chief, broke the news on The Daily Beast which is also controlled byÂ IAC/InterActiveCorp.Â Ms. Brown, in explaining why the publication is going digital-only stated,Â “This decision is not about the quality of the brand or the journalism–that is as powerful as ever. It is about the challenging economics of print publishing and distribution.”
A recent PrintWeek article reveals that Messe Dusseldorf, the organizers of the drupa trade show, are proposing a change in the frequency of the show from once every four years to once every three years. This is a bad idea. Perhaps to offset the proposed more frequent occurrence of drupa, Messe Dusseldorf is also recommending that the length of the show be reduced from fourteen to eleven days. This is a good idea.
Exhibitors have been asking for a shorter show, not a more frequent one. The most obvious benefit of going to a three-year cycle is not for exhibitors, but for the drupa organizers. Over a 12-year period the math works out like this: four 11-day drupas on a three-year cycle equals 44 days. Three 14-day drupas works out to 42 days. In the end there are more days on the show floor with the new proposal.