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Snapshot: Printers Surge in Q1

The world's hunger for hardcopies is far from abating, despite some recent slides in peripheral shipments. The worldwide printer and multifunction printer market grew by double digits in the first quarter of 2014, reaching 37.65 million units — up 32.1 percent from the same period last year, according to market research firm IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Production Printer Tracker.

That growth followed decline of 9.3 percent in Q1 2013 from Q1 2012.

"The worldwide production market is on an upswing, as devices targeted at different segments of the market are finding good traction. The Mid-Production space is performing well in both color and monochrome, while Production devices, both toner and inkjet, are selling well as they continue along the offset transfer path and create brand new applications within digital. 2014 is shaping up to be an exciting year, falling in the mid-drupa cycle, and we expect to see lots of new technology introductions come to market that will drive investment," said Amy Machado, IDC senior research analyst, hardcopy peripheral solutions, in a prepared statement.

Sales of printers hit $1.1 billion in the quarter, up 14.4 percent from Q1 2013.

The strongest region was Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan), which saw growth in printers and MFPs of 29.7 percent, but the United States also saw significant growth: 18 percent.

According to IDC: "Similarly, all of the production print market segments recorded year-over-year gains in 1Q14, including the Mid-Production segment, where shipments were up 37.6 percent year over year. The Production segment grew 10.9 percent in the quarter, and the Label & Packaging segment gained 28.4 percent year over year."

Xerox held the largest share of the market in Q1, 46.6 percent, on sales of $528.74 million. That's a slip in market share of 2.5 points but an increase in sales of 8.5 percent. HP came in second with a 13.9 percent share; Ricoh was in third with 13 percent (a doubling of market share and sales growth of 131.4 percent); Canon was in fourth with 9.8 percent; and Konica Minolta rounded out the top 5 with a 9.5 percent share.

Further details can be found in IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Production Printer Tracker.


About the Author

David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 25-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).

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