Microsoft Plans to Reenter the Smartphone Market by 2020 with Surface Duo

Carrie Sylvester
Oct 9, 2019

The beginning of Fall saw new flagship phones from Apple and Huawei, but what many might not have noticed is that Microsoft announced its own plans to get back into the phone game. Since the announcement was made as part of a Surface press event, some people might have thought that Microsoft’s newest smartphone would use a Windows OS. Instead, the new Surface device is an Android-based “foldable” smartphone.

Not so long ago, Microsoft announced that it would stop supporting Windows 10 Mobile at the end of 2019. One may have thought that meant they were gone from the smartphone market for good, thus making this a surprise announcement for most.

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New Artificial Skin Expands Possibilities for Virtual Reality Control

Colin McMahon
Oct 8, 2019

Researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne have created a new silicone-based material that, when worn over the human body, simulates a sort of “second skin,” according to a recent article published in the Soft Robotics science journal. According to the preliminary findings this material, when used as a feedback device, marks a vast improvement over haptic feedback technology – which is a leading form of virtual reality (VR) control.

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The Soft(ware) Side of LabelExpo Europe 2019

Pat McGrew
Sep 30, 2019

Every two years LabelExpo Europe occupies the majestic buildings of Brussels Expo. It is a large venue with multiple halls capable of handling the variety of analog and digital print hardware and supporting accessories, finishing, media and software that enable the label printing industry. This year the show vibrated with software, AI and IIoT solutions in support of making label and packaging more efficient. While other team members will bring the hardware analysis, this is a quick review of some of the trends at this year’s show.

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Aspiring Photographers on the Rise

Ed Lee
Sep 25, 2019

Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends’ contribution to Digital Imaging Reporter’s State of the Industry 2019

Finding new sales opportunities in the photography market is an ongoing challenge. As part of Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends’ ongoing research into the equipment ownership, attitudes and behaviors of consumers, we recently discovered a very promising group of people. We call them “aspiring photographers.”

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What makes a channel SuperStar?

Deborah Hawkins
Sep 24, 2019

The channel is vital to the document technology industry as it serves the main backbone of small and medium sized customer businesses. As the office equipment market adapts to new market trends such as changing work styles which are more IT-centric, the channel’s portfolio needs to adapt to support “smarter” workplace trends as well as compete with the IT channel. At the same time, we have observed a consolidation of the office equipment channel as customer needs shift to more IT facing technology. All resellers must invest in digital capabilities to offset the perceived threat of declining print volumes and digital conversion.

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Getting Ready for Print 19: The Keypoint Intelligence Pre-show Guide

Pat McGrew
Sep 23, 2019

Each year the schedule of shows changes slightly. Some shows merge, others grow organically, and still others disappear from the calendar. This year Print 19 closes out is long run with more than 80 education sessions, the Red Hot Technology awards, TechTalk panels, TechWalk guided tours, and a keynote from Nick Thomson of WIRED Magazine that should be on everyone’s agenda. Once again, Keypoint Intelligence will host the InfoLunch at noon on Thursday, reviewing the most impactful insights you can use to guide your business. Four members of the Keypoint Intelligence staff will also be presenting in the education forums. Print19 promises three days of opportunity for print service providers, in-plant printers, marketing service providers, and the users of those services.

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Turning it up to 11 – Apple introduces the iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max

Carrie Sylvester
Sep 16, 2019

Fall is almost here and with it comes new Apple iPhones. Smartphones are announced throughout the year, but not many create the buzz of Apple’s annual September Event. While we believe that the iPhones were the darlings of the day, Apple also announced a new iPad and the Apple Watch Series 5, as well as Apple Arcade and Apple TV+ services.

Since Apple first introduced the iPhone in 2007, the company’s fall announcements are always much anticipated. This year was no exception with the unveiling of the iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max.

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Apple Quietly Reveals AR Headset Development

Colin McMahon

On September 10, Apple hosted its annual Fall event – unveiling its product plans for the coming year. For the most part, everything went as expected. The iPhone 11 was announced (along with Pro versions), as well as the Apple Watch Series 5. A new iPad was also unveiled – one especially designed for entry-level customers. Apple also gave updates to its Apple Arcade and Apple TV plus platforms, pledging continued support and attractive price points. Overall, there really wasn’t much to write headlines about…or was there?

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Memjet Announces Third Generation Inkjet Technology: ‘DuraFlex’

Bob Leahey
Sep 12, 2019

Inkjet technology supplier Memjet recently announced a new category of inkjet heads, inks and supporting print modules called ‘DuraFlex.’ The news marks a major addition to the offerings of the San Diego company, which now supplies thermal inkjet heads and dye-based inks to about 40 makers of systems that print labels, mail, office documents, corrugated, and other applications. DuraFlex will differ from the longstanding ‘VersaPass’ technology inside most current Memjet-based printers because of two main features: the heads are long-lasting and the inks are pigmented, yielding durable print; DuraFlex shares these two features and the “Dura” prefix of Memjet DuraLink, the head technology announced last year for use in industrial print applications. DuraFlex thus is a third generation of Memjet technology, one that will occupy a space between VersaPass (mostly for benchtops, starting in 2010) and DuraLink (industrial printers, just now commercially available), and it will be marketed to OEMs accordingly.

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Pitney Bowes Slices Off More Software – SyncSort is the Beneficiary

Marc Mascara
Sep 5, 2019

As Pitney Bowes adds to the Syncsort arsenal of software solutions with the recent acquisitions of SQData and Pitney Bowes Software solutions, the company looks to focus on its core business in the mail and shipping space. Just a few weeks after announcing a cash dividend of $0.05 per share, Pitney embarked on a move that would help the company pay down its near-term debt as it comes to maturity.

On August 26th Pitney announced its intention to shed the bulk of its Software Solutions business for nearly $700M in cash to Syncsort. Pitney looks to maintain their hold in their current markets they serve by refocusing on the client experience for companies that mail and ship by taking out process complexities. By shedding its software business Pitney is continuing its initiative to streamline operations and reduce its overall spend. Performance of Pitney’s software business has been lagging, pointing to a reduction in YOY renewals and an overall reduction in new clients. Pitney notes that one of their key strategies for growth is to increase shareholder value. Over the past few years, Pitney has divested many technologies, including its (DMT) Document Messaging Technologies (now BlueCrest) and their European SMB business.

As Pitney looks to reinvigorate its core focus on mail and shipping, we expect the partnership with the USPS to continue and grow. That said, there is a close watch at how the current and ever-changing US trade war with China will impact Pitney’s bottom line due to its growing business handling parcels from China. With the impending sale to Syncsort and the expected trade war impact, Pitney has adjusted its 2019 earnings forecast down from a range of $.90 / $1.05 to $.65 / $.75 respectively with full-year revenues in the 1 to 2 percent range.

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