New Technological Breakthroughs in the Printing Industry

A study by the International Data Corporation (IDC) shows that the concept of “paperless enterprise” will not become a reality soon. According to the IDC report, most companies, even in this digital era, depend heavily on printers and copiers for their daily tasks. In a head-to-head battle with digital media, the multi-billion dollar printing industry is, however, incorporating innovative, technology-driven solutions, such as wireless printers and cloud printing, to make printers more cost-effective and appealing to buyers.

Here are the newest trends in the printing environment that businesses may want to watch out for.

Mobile Printing

To facilitate printing from anywhere, leading printer manufacturers are offering printers that allow users to print content on their smartphone, without having to use a printer-connected computer. For instance, the latest Konica Minolta printers come with a mobile printing application, which allows users to scan and print via smartphones.

Wireless Printing

By configuring a wireless printer to connect to Bluetooth or a WiFi network, enterprises can eliminate the need for buying a printer for each computer or setting up a print station. This reduces operating costs significantly.

Cloud Printing

Cloud printing services, such as Google Cloud Print, enable users to send print jobs to a cloud-ready printer from any web-connected device, be it a tablet, smartphone, PC or Chromebook. When a user submits a printing task, the Cloud Service forwards the task to the printer selected, allowing printing from anywhere.

3D Printing

3D printers are taking the market by storm. Although a few large companies such as Airbus and Rolls-Royce are using it now, its growing popularity will make 3D printers more affordable in the near future, which will greatly increase their adoption.

MPS (Managed Print Services)

Managed Print Services (MPS), offered by an external service provider, can help companies free up capital, optimise efficiency, save resources, and eliminate the costs of maintaining a printing infrastructure. According to global research and advisory firm Gartner, Inc., small and medium-sized enterprises will particularly benefit from managed print services.

The major MPS providers, however, are not limiting their services to providing only printing support, but they are also offering other add-ons, such as security services and IT environment management. Industry leaders like Konica Minolta are adding these extra capabilities through strategic acquisitions. Konica acquired the IT services company All Covered in 2011, to become a full-fledged cloud, security, and print service provider.

Sublimation Printing

In sublimation printing, heat is used to transfer dye onto plastic, fabric, paper, or card. The name sublimation is given to the printing technique because the dye makes a transition from solid to gas without passing the liquid state.

Sublimation printing is mostly used to print on fabric with a dye sublimation printer. It has surely become a game-changer in the apparel world. Sublimation printing is capable of printing every single tiny aspect with utmost detail. This method also does a good job in printing on paper but you’ll have to use a different kind of paper specially designed for sublimation printing.

It is better if you avoid using normal printing for sublimation but nothing says you can’t do it. There is a possibility for the colour to bleed through the paper if normal printing paper is used. When the graphic project is a big one, sublimation printing is among the top choices.

Secure Printing

Companies around the world are striving to ensure that only authorised personnel have access to print documents. Keeping document security in mind, printer manufacturers are integrating document control mechanisms into printing devices, including password authentication and ID swiping.

Multifunction A3 Printer

In comparison to 8 × 12-inch paper prints, 11 × 17-inch A3 prints are becoming increasingly popular these days. Top printer manufacturers are introducing new offerings in this emerging segment, for instance, the a3 printers at Konica Minolta, which incorporate state-of-the-art features, such as the bizhub Extended Solution Technology (bEST), smart InfoPalette, intuitive pop-ups, multi-touch menus, EFI Fiery image controller, Bluetooth connectivity, and the bizhub Open Platform technology to enable seamless integration.

Konica Minolta’s award-winning multifunction printers, integrated with proprietary and third-party software, efficiently manage the production of superior-quality print material, create direct mail promotions, accelerate workflow, and help perform account tracking, simplifying the printing process for businesses of all sizes.