Digital Color - Cleared For Take-off
Digital color printing has improved tremendously in recent years. It's time for in-plants to focus on the benefits it can offer them.
DON'T LOOK now, but digital color printing is poised to become the darling of the in-plant world.
Faster, cheaper and more reliable than ever—and boasting improved print quality—digital color printing is finally living up to the hype it once received.
Despite all the hoopla, however, one of the biggest strikes against it, marketing reps will tell you, has long been lack of awareness in the marketplace.
And then along came Heidelberg.
Ever since Drupa, where the offset king announced that its partnership with Kodak had yielded the 70-page-per-minute (ppm) NexPress 2100 digital color printer, the buzz has been building about digital color printing. Even NexPress' competitors concede the importance of Heidelberg's entry into the digital color printing arena.
"When a company like Heidelberg steps into the market, it gives verification that digital printing is definitely the future direction of printing," declares Bob Barbera, vice president of Xeikon's commercial print unit.
Barbera's not the only one who feels digital color printing will be a major force in the 21st century. The National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) released a study at Print Outlook 01 that revealed digital printing is the service printing executives feel will be most in demand over the next two years.
Furthermore, Heidelberg predicts by 2008 the market for digital color printing will grow from $4.2 billion currently to more than $46 billion.
Now, as the second wave of digital color printers reaches the marketplace, low-cost, variable data, print on-demand color is available from a number of vendors at a fraction of the old price.
What's more, because in-plants traditionally hold close relationships with their in-house marketing and sales departments, they are uniquely disposed to take advantage of all the benefits variable data color printing has to offer.