Covering Developments in August 2020

  • The Big News: "Vendors Are Hoping Spring Was a COVID-19 Turning Point" - The quarterly financial figures coming out of the hardcopy industry (most recently from Konica Minolta, Ricoh, Brother, Sharp, Toshiba TEC, Fujifilm and HP) didn't paint a pretty picture. The data only served to confirm what industry watchers had warned about a quarter that bore the brunt of COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns. However, a bit of good news did come out of China, which entered and exited its lockdown earlier than other regions. And in China, printer and MFP placements were up 19% year-over-year in the April-June quarter. So cross your fingers.
  • The Editorial: "Ready for the Not So New Normal?" - So the question arises. Is a theoretical consumer inkjet market resurgence just an HP thing, or is it an industry phenomenon? Let’s say the evidence so far is mixed. I’m certainly not seeing any kind of strategic rethinking whatsoever among Canon, Epson or Brother when it comes to the consumer inkjet biz. So will HP end up being the lucky contrarian in the group? Or is this just another one of those periodic HP ink folks versus HP laser folks family squabbles?
  • In Other News - In the "who would have thought that" category, Deli has entered the Chinese A3 MFP market and done it with a pair of products OEM'd from none other than Canon ... Toshiba has launched the very first homegrown A4 MFPs in its entire history ... How is it that TA Triumph-Adler is relatively stable and generating over one-tenth's of Kyocera's worldwide hardcopy revenue? ... Australia's Reckon is funding a new future in the cloud for its nQueue legal print/scan management software unit. ... Neonode, a tiny Swedish supplier that depends on the printer industry, has gotten a reprieve. ... How is it that Brother is doing so well in the US dealer channel? ... Icahn has sold all the HP shares he bought last year and added more Xerox shares for the first time in five years. ... ThinPrint is touting its ezeep cloud print solution, but will anybody notice? ... ACDI is representing ScanShare from Holland as a way for both companies to enter the US capture market. ... Konica Minolta is finally getting serious about making its MFP control panel personal and portable. ... Brother is readying its biggest lineup yet in the hot-and-heavy ink tank AIO market. ... Kofax has put its name on the desktop once again with the new Power PDF 4. ... Plus a whole lot more!