On Tuesday, marketing automation technology provider Marketo formally began the process of making an initial public offering of its common stock by filing a confidential submission with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for review. If the IPO moves forward, it will reveal insights about Marketo’s strategy and operations and could lead to a flurry of M&A and other IPO activity in this fast growing segment.
The San Mateo, CA-based company has raised over $100 million in venture capital funding since its launch in 2006 and has been an aggressive competitor in the crowded marketing technology landscape. Marketo CEO Phil Fernandez and his team have done a good serving both small-and-medium business (SMB) and enterprise customers by providing a scalable marketing platform with an intuitive interface and a strong network of partners and integrations. This strategy has grown the company to $32.9 million in revenue in 2011–or 3,545% growth in three years, according to its Inc. 500 listing. Read more »
In January 2012, at Rochester Institute of Technology, I defended my Master’s Thesis, “Consumer Perception of Inkjet Printed Textiles.” My thesis work focused on how observers perceived various samples of wide format inkjet printed textiles when applied to different applications. The goal of my research was to find what types of textiles consumers want and need.
At the time of my thesis, it was just an idea to have the ability to see wide format printers printing textiles in a production environment. Flash forward to 2013–as I read InfoTrends’ new multi-client study Transforming Textile Printing, I see that the market that I had profiled two years ago (as I began my work) has totally changed with new hardware, a wider substrate selection, and more acceptance from the fashion community.
Xerox did the right thing today by acquiring Impika. Everyone knows Xerox has a major hole in their product line and technology portfolio related to production inkjet printing. They have been lapped by HP, Ricoh, Canon/Océ, Kodak and EFI and risked being shut out from this lucrative market given the limitations of their solid ink technology.
InfoTrends estimates over 90 billion pages were printed on high volume continuous feed color digital presses (inkjet or EP, 10 million+ monthly duty cycle) in 2012 and that the market will exceed 500 billion pages by 2017.
In my previous blog post I discussed the experience of unpacking and setting up an HP Officejet Pro X page-wide inkjet device (the X576dw MFP). In this post I will be sharing my thoughts about the device’s usability. Before delving into this topic, I’d like to clarify that my background is not in the office print industry but rather journalism and communications. Having only been at InfoTrends for a little over a year, I have not seen dozens of printers and MFPs in action over the years like many of my colleagues who are print and document industry veterans. In fact I’d like to think that my non-print industry background makes me representative of real-world customers/the typical office-based knowledge workers that will be the users of the Officejet Pro X.
Typical office workers
As a typical office user, I value technology that is easy to use and after using the Officejet Pro X576dw I can definitely say that usability is a major benefit of this device. It was very easy for me to set up and use a wide range of functions, including printing from a PC, printing from a smartphone, printing from cloud apps, printing from a USB drive, scanning to a PC, scanning to a USB drive, scanning to email, scanning to a network folder, and copying. I wasn’t able to try out the device’s fax functionality as our copy room doesn’t have a phone line available. Nevertheless, the inclusion of fax, as well as all the other functions, is a key selling point of the device. The fact that these functions are so simple and straightforward to use is really the icing on the cake. Read more »
Office, Supplies | Comments Off on Now that the Officejet Pro X is available, what’s it like?
Rumored for some time, Office Depot and OfficeMax announced that the companies would be merging with the goal of creating a stronger and more efficient combined company. While retail has been the office superstores primary and original mode of business, the three top chains, Office Depot, OfficeMax, and Staples, are all finding that their business has been evolving away from retail towards the Internet and business to business (B2B). As a result, the chains have been altering their strategy towards smaller stores and making greater investments in e-commerce initiatives. We believe that for electronics and high value supplies like ink and toner, Internet is creating great stress on retail. The truth of the matter is that with the proliferation of tablets and smart phones, people are spending more time with their devices and less time visiting a store. Also, adding to the competitive pressure for the superstores, Walmart and other mass merchandiser types are a one-stop-shop and now carry wide range of office supplies. Read more »
In this video blog I discuss a recent Printing Industries of America (PIA) initiative on the value of print. See www.printing.org/valueofprint for more on this program, which includes a flip book and a mobile application.
Part two: Setting up the device and installing the drivers
As I explained in my last blog post, over the next couple of weeks I will be writing about the experience of using an HP Officejet Pro X page-wide inkjet device (the X576dw MFP). The last post discussed the process of handling and unpacking the newly released device. This post will address the experience of setting up the MFP and installing the drivers.
In the first blog post I said I was a little surprised to see polystyrene foam used to protect the printer, given HP’s leadership in a variety of “green” areas, and its usage of cardboard in other packaging. HP read that blog and has been kind enough to respond with an explanation. HP says that “Molded pulp cushion is well utilized when unit weight is up to 12 pounds. The Officejet Pro X is well beyond that weight limit. Some of our typical small size/light weight products can use molded pulp, but not all; product fragility is also a factor. With units over 12 pounds, the MP (molded pulp) does not provide enough cushioning in drop tests.”
We thank HP for that response. It highlights an important issue–in a world where people are green-conscious, it is easy for people to reach a negative conclusion, perhaps unfairly. It may be advisable for all vendors to communicate why certain materials are being used in their packaging. A simple sticker on polystyrene explaining why alternatives were not suitable could suffice.
The experience of setting up the device and installing drivers was fairly simple. The first step was opening the ink cartridge door, removing an orange shipping restraint, inserting the ink cartridges, and closing the ink cartridge door. The shipping restraint came right out and the cartridges went in nice and smoothly.
Besides conducting research on the photography market for our clients, many of the analysts in the InfoTrends’ Consumer & Professional Imaging group are serious hobbyists and even semi-professional photographers outside of work. In my spare time, I do a lot of writing and photography for a few different car magazines; with most of my photography work a mix of still and action shots, including coverage of motorsport events.
For the last seven years, I’ve been shooting with a Nikon D200 and have wanted to upgrade for the last two years. The D200 has been a workhorse and is still a reliable camera, but is starting to show its age. The command dial has become increasingly difficult to turn over the last year; the rubber front grip piece has been glued back to the body twice in the last year, and the clips that hold batteries in place in the optional battery grip are both broken off (though they work when the door is closed). The D200’s 10.2MP resolution is still adequate for the magazines I shoot for and even some ad work, but there have been occasions in the last year where I’ve lost work because the resolution wasn’t sufficient for larger format applications.
So it’s time to demote the D200 to backup camera, but deciding what [Nikon] model to upgrade to has been a bit of a conundrum. What I really want is a professional-level DX-format camera with an all-metal body, higher resolution (somewhere between 18-24MP), and a faster continuous shooting speed. A replacement for the aging D300s would be perfect, but Nikon’s recent focusÂ onÂ the higher end of the market has revolved aroundÂ full-frame FX-format cameras and not DX.Â That leaves me with a choice between the D800 and the D600, as the D4 and D3x are well out of my price range.
This month InfoTrends’ on-line research will include an important addition – the Ultimate Guide to color digital label and packaging (CDLP) presses. The Ultimate Guide Online is a series of databases utilized by print and marketing service providers, as well as industry suppliers, to compare hardware and software solutions. The new Ultimate Guide to CDLP joins the established Ultimate Guides for Roll-Fed Devices, Cut-Sheet Devices, and various software guides, such as Enterprise TransPromo, Multi-Channel Communications, Variable Data Publishing, Web-to-Print solutions, and Print MIS.
It has been more than 35 years since Kodak engineer Steve Sasson built what is widely regarded as the first digital camera, and nearly 18 years since Apple introduced the Kodak-built QuickTake 100, the first sub-$1,000 digital camera. For several years, it was important to note which cameras were digital and which prints were made from an image captured by a “digital camera,” often to explain away any image quality differences versus “real cameras” that still used film.
Much has changed since then. Film is but a distant memory for nearly everyone — except those who don’t remember it at all. Digital cameras are real cameras and digital photos are real photos, but for some reason the industry (InfoTrends included) continues to use the terms “digital camera” and “digital photography,” as if to differentiate them from something with which they would be easily confused. Read more »