May 28, 2013
In 2008, InfoTrends published a blog entitled, Beyond Process Color Digital Printing: Approaches to Additional Colors, Special Effects, and MICR, discussing vendors that offered one or more imaging units
in addition to the four traditional process colors (CMYK). Today, we have seen leaders in the high-end electrophotographic market, such as HP, Kodak, and Xeikon, expanding the capabilities of their devices to provide additional efforts to accommodate five or more print stations also known as, “5+” colors, during production. There has also been some activity in off-line digital devices that provide the ability to add value to a printed page through the application, typically via inkjet heads, of a gloss coating or some other effect. New entrants to the offline market such as, Scodix and MGI, are a few of these offline companies entering this market.
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May 23, 2013
On May 20, Yahoo announced a major redesign of its Flickr photo sharing service. One of the new features is that the storage limit has been raised toÂ one terabyte (TB) for all users, and it’s free! Read more »
May 22, 2013
By any standard, the Chinese workflow market is years behind the Western industry. Adoption of Computer-to-Plate (CtP) has just started in China, and there is strong reliance on manual labour and processes.
However, unlike Western markets that took twenty years to migrate from CtP to digital, the transition in China might go much quicker as labour wages are spiralling. Whereas western markets experienced relatively stable labour cost when they transitioned from analogue to digital, it is estimated that print-industry related labour cost will rise with about 20% annually. Especially in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guanzhou (the so-called Tier 1 cities) it is difficult for print service providers to attract and retain (unskilled) staff due to high demand for workers. This year, it’s estimated that Chinese labour rates have overtaken those in Mexico.
Source: Bank of America, 2013
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This month consumers in Europe are beginning to see Coca Cola bottles on retail shelves labeled in a new way. Each bottle has the brand’s familiar swoosh graphic and red and white colors, but with iconic brand name reduced or cut out entirely. Instead, the words “Coca Cola” on the bottle have been mostly replaced by one of 150 most popularÂ firstÂ namesÂ in the country where the drink is sold. HP Indigo WS6600s are printing all the names, essentially a giant exercise in versioning–overÂ 800 millionÂ labels will be used between now and the end of Q3. Special kiosks will be on tour in the region so consumers can personalize their own Coca-Cola bottles. Coca Cola is also enlisting social media, first by encouraging Facebook users to create aÂ virtual personalized Coke can to share with someone, and then look for their own names on bottles in stores. The deal is historic, not just because it’s for Coca Cola, but because it likely is, in effect, the biggest color digital label print job ever.
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One of the key findings from our new “Wide Format in the Communications Mix” study is that over 60% of wide format graphics need to be fulfilled within 2 days. This dynamic has vital implications for vendors up-and-down the wide format digital print supply chain. It means that equipment and supplies distributors with the best warehousing and logistics capabilities, and the best vision into product and technology portfolio, will have a huge advantage.
Many of the conversations I have with wide format digital print supplies manufacturers indicate that finding and maintaining great distribution partners is one of their biggest challenges. Read more »
May 21, 2013
One of the big news stories from China Print 2013 is a technology demonstration by MasterWork and Taichuan of a sheet fed UV inkjet-based digital color printer with a print width of 420 millimeters. This is the first color inkjet model of its type from a Chinese vendor.
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Christine Dunne Dunne
As cloud services and mobile apps grow in popularity, vendors are increasingly offering apps and cloud connectivity for their printers and multifunction peripherals/MFPs (devices that print, copy, scan, and fax). Accessible via the print device’s touchscreen, these apps enable users to print directly from the cloud, scan directly to the cloud, and in some instances perform other tasks such as connect to a predefined workflow or business process, purchase office materials, and access document templates.
Konica Minolta’s “bizhub MarketPlace” MFP apps
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May 19, 2013
Freeing business users from restrictive and costly IT procedures when developing, updating or executing document processes is a major driver in enterprise Customer Communication Management (CCM) investments. Today, enterprises need to have the ability to act nimble when confronted with changing communication requirements as customers are increasingly dictating the relationship and want to be served according to their communication preferences.
ISIS Papyrus, which held an open house event recently at its Vienna headquarters in celebration of its 25th anniversary, is an Austrian-based leading CCM technology provider that has defined “Adaptive Case Management” as its distinctive strength. Read more »
May 17, 2013
Just because the camera phone — you know those handy cameras on feature phones and smartphones – has become the everyday camera for many people doesn’t mean it’s all doom and gloom for traditional cameras. In the most recent InfoTrends Digital Camera End User study we found that digital cameras are still being used to take more photos on average than a camera phone and used more often for special occasion photos. The survey also asked a “blue sky” question about interest levels in some current and possible digital camera offerings. Read more »
May 15, 2013
Yesterday Nokia launched the Lumia 925 at a high profile event in London. The Lumia 925 joins a long line of venerable smartphones. The Lumia 925 features an 8.7MP camera and a 6 element lens. With this phone Nokia attempts to cement its position as the imaging leader in the smartphone market. Smartphones are mini computers that can be carried around at any time. Small, light and in most cases with cameras that are good enough for taking both every day and occasional special occasion photos. These are also the reasons why smartphones are taking the place of digital cameras as the camera used most often by consumers. InfoTrends’ European end user data clearly illustrates this trend. Read more »