According to new data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Large Format Printer Tracker, large format printer (LFP) shipments declined by less than -1% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2015 (1Q15) while revenue declined by almost -3%.
“The first quarter got the year off to a strong start with key wide format printing technologies like Latex, UV, and Eco-solvent inkjet showing nice growth overall. Latex really stood out in the quarter with shipments up over 55% compared to the first quarter of last year,” says Phuong Hange, programme director: Worldwide Large Format Printer Tracker at IDC.
“Some decline in shipments is expected, however, because the average rated speed of wide format printers is increasing, providing the capacity needed to replace older technologies with fewer new units.”
The wide format CAD/Technical printer market segment was a bit soft in 1Q15, with shipments down -1,2% from the first quarter of 2014. The decline in toner-based printers continued, with toner-based shipments down -14%. Inkjet printer shipments in the CAD/Technical segment grew slightly (less than 1%) when compared to Q1 2014.
Across all technologies, wide format graphics printer shipments were nearly unchanged, but because the mix is changing towards more productive Latex and UV-curable engines, printer revenue increased more than $5-million in 1Q15.
HP is the top supplier of wide format digital printing systems worldwide. The combination of strength in the CAD/technical market, its dominance in the burgeoning Latex category, and a competitive position in the UV market give HP the top position overall.
Canon maintained its strong number two position among wide format printer manufacturers with market share of 21% when Canon and Canon-Oce shipments are combined.
Epson maintained its position as the number three worldwide supplier to the wide format digital printer market. Epson is seeing nice growth in the dye-sublimation and technical printers, and has re-launched its eco-solvent inkjet printer units this spring.
Roland is the fourth-rated supplier of wide format printers worldwide based on its strength in the eco-solvent market and growing presence in UV and dye-sublimation.
Mimaki has grown to become the fifth largest supplier of wide format printing systems worldwide, surpassing Ricoh, which saw a decline in its wide format toner-based printer shipments.