Crossing the Digital Divide
The rate of adoption for digital color presses and direct imaging presses on the part of commercial printers will increase dramatically over the next several years, according to a recent survey by TrendWatch Graphic Arts, in New York.
In a recent report, Digital Color Printing: Ready for Primetime, TWGA states the number of commercial print shops with digital color presses will jump 234.1% by 2007, while the number of commercial printing establishments with direct imaging presses will jump 66.7%. The current market penetration rate for digital color presses is 3%, the adoption rate for direct imaging presses is 1%.
"The catalyst for growth in digital color printing is short-run work," says Vince Naselli, director of TrendWatch Graphic Arts. "The TrendWatch database reveals a gradual downward trend in short-run color with traditional presses as a sales opportunity, and a sharp up swing in short-run color using digital presses."
Drawing from its database, TWGA polled printers, design and production firms, publishers, and Internet design and development firms to compile the statistics. Naselli says future investment by commercial print shops will favor toner-based color presses rather than an investment in color copiers.
When asked what the challenges to successful digital color printing were 66% of those surveyed pointed to a rebounding economy, while 41% said having a capable sales staff to sell digital color printing would be a major contributor. Competition, pricing, and reducing internal costs were also cited. Those driving digital color printing are book printers, firms with digital presses, and quick printers.
When asked if jobs designed for digital color printing were seen as a growth area, only 10% of respondents said this service increase a lot, while 28% said it increased marginally.