SMEs can cash in on digital boom
Digital printing, which currently accounts for 15% of the total global print market, is set to boom in the next few years. Jane Geypen, Product Manager: HP IPG, Axiz, says technology changes will bring highly adapted and cost-efficient products, and SMEs are particularly well positioned to embrace the analogue to digital trend.
While analogue still co-exists with digital today, digital technology is rapidly taking centre stage in the home, entertainment and work space, Geypen says. "Digital photography, for example, is expected to grow by 17% per year in EMEA through 2010. More and more consumers today print their photos at home with HP small appliance printers or Photosmart printers, and this is complemented by online and retail photo finishing."
Market perceptions have traditionally classed colour printers as expensive and out of reach, yet today the total cost of ownership of printers has decreased considerably because of higher yields on toner cartridges and revolutionary advances in technology. The office printer is no longer just an accessory, but a necessity. Printing speeds, costs and functionality have all increased and print quality has improved tremendously.
Digital imaging has helped bring down the costs associated with colour printing and has also paved the way for increased adoption of multifunctional devices. This is particularly attractive to SMEs, which can use this change and innovation to become more efficient and offer superior quality.
"Higher processing power and faster data transfer speeds have increased printing speed, while increased spooling memory in printers has helped to increase productivity levels," Geypen says. "Printers have also become more intelligent when it comes to maintenance, with self-diagnostic features, and have also become wireless, meaning they can be quickly relocated."
Scanning, she says, is increasingly moving from a back-office to a front-office function as this digital solution improves the retention of and access to information across the business. HP caters for general office/unattended scanning, document imaging management, professional graphics and network scanning.
Whether flatbed or sheet-fed, HP scanners provide high quality, professional end results. Features include Bluetooth, ultra sonic multi-feed detection, ID card slot, wireless connectivity, 30 programmable destinations, smart document scanning software and hardware dust and scratch removal. Further to these, you can also scan in slides and negatives and, with the simple touch of a button, scan directly to PDF with certain models in the scanner range.
"The trend towards digitalisation is now firmly entrenched, with colour printing being the biggest growth area in office automation," Geypen says. "Companies that want to prosper in today`s competitive environment need to address more than their traditional customers, and do so with more than traditional products."