Category: Imaging Industry

Why Augmented Reality Is Essential to COVID-19 Recovery and Future Productivity

Colin McMahon
Apr 27, 2020

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Once the pandemic is done, the road to recovery from COVID-19 may be challenging for certain companies due to a variety of factors. These include retraining whatever workforce was lost, working to get productivity back up to normal levels, and communicating challenges across an array of different teams and environments.

Keypoint Intelligence believes that the companies that will recover more quickly from COVID-19, as well as potentially better mitigate the pandemic, may very well be the ones that began to incorporate augmented reality (AR) software and hardware into their standard work procedures.

Before we dive in, here is a brief video rundown of exactly what AR is and how it differs from virtual reality (VR):

To summarize, VR takes the user into a fully digital 3D space. AR (by contrast) overlays the real, physical world with digital information.

Read more »

COVID-19 Impact on Trade Shows – List of Canceled and Postponed Events

India Tatro
Apr 9, 2020

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As the situation surrounding COVID-19 continues to evolve, many trade shows and industry events have been postponed or canceled in order to protect the health of attendees, exhibitors, and employees. Many shows with an original date in March-June 2020 have postponed with hopes to hold the show in the fall, while others have canceled altogether with the intention of returning in 2021. Some canceled events will have a virtual experience instead, utilizing web conferencing services like Zoom.

In the table below, Keypoint Intelligence has assembled a list of upcoming trade shows, with their current status and any new show dates where applicable: Read more »

How Virtual Reality Can Keep Workplace Collaboration on Track during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Colin McMahon
Mar 19, 2020

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Every day brings more troubling news of the coronavirus. What at first seemed like a distant problem has quickly turned into a global event affecting nearly every aspect of business and personal life. As many adjust to a new routine of social distancing, many executives and decision makers are left wondering what they can do to ensure productivity while simultaneously keeping employees in good spirits.

Enter virtual reality—a relatively new tool that has experienced enormous breakthroughs over the last several years. While VR has yet to catch on commercially, it has found success in multiple business verticals. The coronavirus has given businesses a new perspective on VR and its capabilities, which is in turn helping businesses to shift into the digital economy and allow employees to work from home more efficiently.

Read more »

Update: Xerox Drops its Bid for HP

Jamie Bsales
Nov 6, 2019

Update: On March 31, 2020, Xerox officially dropped its tender offer for HP shares, citing the macroeconomic uncertainty and market turmoil caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.                                                          

Original post, with updates:

The Wall Street Journal reported last night that Xerox’s board of directors discussed the possibility of purchasing HP Inc. in a cash-and-stock deal worth north of $27 billion. While we don’t have any information about the veracity of the WSJ report or the likelihood of it coming to pass, the combination (in some form) of HP and Xerox has been speculated about for several years.

Xerox executives–the team put in place by activist investors in the wake of the scuttled sale to FUJIFILM Holdings– have spoken publicly about their openness to finding other engine suppliers beyond Fuji-Xerox, and with HP they would have that. HP could benefit from Xerox’s strong channel-partner organization. Indeed, the two companies already announced a closer working relationship earlier this year. And while the Wall Street Journal described the pair as “two fading stars of technology” (a characterization we don’t agree with), a combined company would be in a very formidable position in both A3/A4 office equipment and related software, as well as in the production print space. HP also has a growing 3D-manufacturing business, which could be an attractive growth area for a resurgent Xerox. The combined companies would also be an innovation powerhouse: Xerox’s PARC (Palo Alto Research Center) and HP Labs are already among the most prolific organizations in the country when it comes to patent applications.

Of course, it wasn’t that long ago that smart money was on HP purchasing Xerox. But now with Xerox stock trading at a 10-year high and the company flush with a $2.3 billion down payment available from the sale of its half of the  joint venture with FUJIFILM–not to mention HP stock trading at historically low multiples (until this news leaked, that is)–Xerox may be in the better financial position to leverage such an acquisition . The WSJ reported that Xerox already had financing commitments lined up. The company could also consider selling HP’s Personal System’s Group to help pay down some of the debt incurred by the purchase.

That said, HP was not impressed. On November 18 and in communications thereafter, HP announced that its Board of Directors had rejected the Xerox offer. In its statements, HP said the deal undervalued the company, and cited concerns about the debt levels the combined entity would be saddled with.

And the saga came to an abrupt end on March 31, when Xerox officially withdrew its tender offer in the face of the growing COVID-19 crisis. The company’s official statement reads:

The current global health crisis and resulting macroeconomic and market turmoil caused by COVID-19 have created an environment that is not conducive to Xerox continuing to pursue an acquisition of HP Inc. (NYSE:HPQ) (“HP”). Accordingly, we are withdrawing our tender offer to acquire HP and will no longer seek to nominate our slate of highly qualified candidates to HP’s Board of Directors.

While it is disappointing to take this step, we are prioritizing the health, safety and well-being of our employees, customers, partners and other stakeholders, and our broader response to the pandemic, over and above all other considerations.

There remain compelling long-term financial and strategic benefits from combining Xerox and HP. The refusal of HP’s Board to meaningfully engage over many months and its continued delay tactics have proven to be a great disservice to HP stockholders, who have shown tremendous support for the transaction.

Xerox’s Board of Directors and management team are grateful for the significant backing we received from both Xerox and HP stockholders throughout this process. We thank the talented individuals who agreed to stand for election to the HP Board, making time in their busy schedules to take on this responsibility when HP’s existing Board did not. And finally, we thank the banks who agreed to finance this acquisition, who never wavered in their commitments, even during the market turmoil caused by COVID-19.

Keypoint Intelligence Forecast Continued Growth in Business Inkjet & A4 Color Laser Shipments through 2023 in North America and Western Europe

Barbara Richards
Jul 3, 2019

While the overall office equipment markets in NA and WE are mature, Keypoint Intelligence/InfoTrends expect continued growth in A4 Color Laser and Business Inkjet Segment 3 & 4 according to recently published SF Printer and MFP Hardware Forecasts for both regions. In addition, the shift from SF printers to multifunctional devices will continue. According to the forecast, in North America, SF Laser printers represented 45% of total shipments in 2018 and are expected to decline to 40% of devices compared with MF shipments which will grow from 55% to 60% by 2023.  While in Western Europe MF shipments will grow from 56% to 58% of total shipments during the same period.

In addition, total NA office color laser shipments are also expected to outperform monochrome devices during the same period growing from 35% of total shipments to 40% by 2023. While in Western Europe, office color laser is expected to grow from 40% of total shipments to 41% during the same period. While the overall market for both regions will remain relatively flat to a slight decline the shift from SF to MF devices and from monochrome to color will continue to impact the overall office equipment market. The biggest opportunity for growth is within the office color laser A4 segments (3-4) for both regions.  In North America A4 Color MF devices are forecasted to grow at a 6.8% CAGR through 2023.

Business Inkjet Segments Continue to Grow

In addition to the growth in A4 color laser MFPs, Keypoint Intelligence/InfoTrends forecast shows growth in Business Inkjet Segments 3 and 4 through the same period. Business Inkjet Segment 3 is expected to grow at 6% CAGR in North America and 2.3% CAGR in Western Europe.  The majority of unit growth will be in A4 MFPs in this business inkjet segment with new models that offer longer life consumables and feature-rich product offerings. This new breed of inkjet devices offers an attractive alternative to laser particularly within the SMB office environment with standard wireless connectivity, high yield consumables and in some cases, comparable cost per page to laser. Furthermore, Inkjet Segment 4 is expected to grow at 9.7 CAGR in North America and 6.2% CAGR by 2023 in Western Europe during the same period, driven by a wider acceptance of page-wide ink technology and new robust high-speed color inkjet devices entering this market segment.

Read more »

2018 Financial Review: A Look at 16 Industry Players

Christine Dunne
Jul 2, 2019

Each year, Keypoint Intelligence publishes a document looking at the financial health of manufacturers in the global office equipment industry. The 2019 version is now available through our office services; it covers the performance of 16 industry players in the 2018 fiscal year. In most cases, we show the vendors’ imaging and printing revenue over a five-year span and explain the reasons for any changes. We also review operating profits within imaging and printing divisions to provide another measure of financial health. In the cases where OEMs do not report their imaging and printing performance publicly, we substitute revenue and profit information with data from our single-function printer and MFP placement and market share estimates.

Here are a few high-level findings from our latest financial review:

  • On the whole, global imaging and print-related revenue increased nearly 2% from 2017-2018 – fueled by vendors like HP that saw growth
  • Over a five-year period (2014-2018), overall global imaging/print revenue declined 7% – driven by declining demand and competitive pricing pressures (see chart below)
  • Vendors continued to experience a wide range of profit margins in 2018 (i.e., 0.6% to 16%)

Overall industry health as reflected by revenue

Notes: This chart includes the performance of 12 OEMs; fiscal year start and end dates vary somewhat by OEM

For more information on this and other Keypoint Intelligence research and deliverables, please contact Christine Dunne at christine.dunne@keypointintelligence.com.

Making Printers & MFPs More Accessible to All Users

Christine Dunne
Jun 20, 2019

Document imaging OEMs have taken many steps to make their products more accessible to people with special needs. While this may be the right thing to do, it can also make business sense—particularly when selling into government agencies, other vertical markets (e.g., education, healthcare), and environments that put an emphasis on accessibility. Furthermore, in many instances designing for accessibility provides the added benefit of delivering a better experience for all users—regardless of their physical and mental capabilities.

In a recently published Market & Vendor Insights report, Market & Vendor Insights: Accessibility, Keypoint Intelligence analysts outlined specific efforts OEMs have undertaken to support accessibility, as well as scored these manufacturers on relevant product features, processes, and initiatives. Categories evaluated are shown in the below scoring table, which for the purposes of this blog post omits the names of manufacturers (they are included in the actual report). The darker blue the cell, the better the OEM performed in our assessment.

MFP/printer accessibility scoring by OEM (specific names omitted for blog post)

Office CompleteView subscribers have access to this market insight report, which also includes print accessibility primary research, OEM profiles, and analyses of PaceSetter award winners. Anyone else interested in this document can contact Christine Dunne at christine.dunne@keypointintelligence.com for more information.

New Research Document Scores OEMs on MFP Platforms, Apps, Cloud Readiness

Christine Dunne
Jun 17, 2019

Recently, Keypoint Intelligence analysts published a new Market & Vendor Insight report: MFP Platforms, App Ecosystems, & Cloud Readiness. In this document, we identified the trends surrounding multifunction printer software platforms as well as their associated app ecosystems and cloud readiness features, laid out the competitive landscape in this area, and showed how major OEMs performed in our latest platform and apps ecosystem evaluation (for which cloud readiness is a new scoring rubric).

As a basis for this evaluation, we surveyed the leading document imaging equipment makers in the United States and Europe, and conducted independent research to determine the progress path of MFP software platforms and their associated app ecosystems. Interested in a snippet of this report? Here’s a visual showing that office equipment dealers believe MFP apps that scan directly to cloud locations will be most important to customers over the next year.

In the next 12 months, how important will MFP apps be in your customer’s overall office environment?

Interested in more information about this document, including PaceSetter award winners? If you’re an InfoTrends Office CompleteView subscriber, the report is included as part of your subscription. Otherwise, please contact Christine Dunne at christine.dunne@keypointintelligence.com.

WHEN DID SNEAKERS BECOME ACCEPTABLE BUSINESS ATTIRE?

Deborah Hawkins
Feb 11, 2019

I haven’t done the rounds of many exhibitions the last few years. My focus area of office print is generally served by Vendor specific events and the one global event the industry had, CeBIT has now finally been put to bed. So I was quite surprised at my first visit to ISE (Integrated Systems Europe) 2019 in Amsterdam. It was full, thriving and so many people were wearing sneakers.

Does this have something to do with the meeting of two worlds that ISE has emerged from?  The vibrant Audio Visual (AV) high tech hardware focussed industry and the IT world that can integrate practically anything without having to heed to standards or obligations?

Founded in 2004 and boosting 3500 visitors that year, the exhibition has grown to some 1400 exhibitors and an expected 90,000 visitors in 2019. For me, it felt far more than that. The growth has undoubtedly been supported by the portfolio breadth of AV boasting 8k, curved as well as inflatable screens and flashy displays and its acceptance across many horizontal and vertical sectors. What attracted me most to the show however, was the connection to IT and looking at how the AV industry hooks up with business IT, the hub of our digital world today. I see a lot of parallels to the office printing industry and I knew this industry was in a similar stage of disruption when I saw the likes of Google & Uber speaking about workplace trends at ISE 2019. Read more »

Gen Z: An Important Group of Photography Consumers

Alan Bullock
Jan 18, 2019

This article originally appeared in Digital Imaging Reporter – January 14, 2019


Many pundits assume that gen Z consumers are not that interested in traditional photo activities, such as ordering prints and custom photo merchandise. After all, they were born into a world of digital cameras, social networks and omnipresent screens.

However, a recent Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends study indicates that this group of more than 73 million people, born between 1998 and 2010, is actively engaged in photography. Moreover, the study suggests that gen Z is worthy of imaging vendors’ marketing attention. Read more »

2016 InfoTrends, Inc.

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