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From Hybrid Workflow to i300 White Paper Factory: Some Numbers

Thanks to some internal numbers from United Mail, we get a look inside the cost savings and QC improvements of switching from a hybrid to a Canon Solutions America VarioPrint i300 workflow.

Setting Up Estimating in Your Print MIS

Your Print MIS should be your trusted system of record for your business; the estimating module is the most critical component of your Print MIS. When you implement estimating brilliantly, it provides you a healthy daily dose of ROI forever.

Heidelberg 2.0—Reinventing a Classic

How do you reinvent a 160-year-old business to address the new market requirements? This is a challenge that we have been seeing over and over again, and many companies have not been able to make that change. Heidelberg seems to have found the formula that looks at their internal organization, but more importantly, at their customers’ changing requirements as well.

Textile Innovation in Rhode Island

Officially launched in September 2018, the Rhode Island Textile Innovation Network (RITIN) is another example of initiatives across the country that are working to revive the U.S. textile and apparel industry, both with innovations that improve efficiency and to reshore textile and apparel manufacturing. We spoke with RITIN steering committee chairman and CEO of textile company Trans-Tex Michael Woody to learn more.

EFI Reggiani Unveils the EFI Reggiani BOLT—World’s Fastest Digital Textile Printer

EFI Reggiani held a gala launch event for its new EFI Reggiani BOLT single-pass digital textile printer at Reggiani’s Bergamo, Italy, headquarters. Attended by nearly 300 media, customers, and potential customers, the event generated a high level of excitement. With high-quality print speeds of up to 90 meters per minute, this press looks to be a game changer for high-volume digital textile printing.

Prepress and Postpress Services Establishments

In 2010, there were 2,080 establishments offering prepress and/or postpress services; by 2016, that number had dropped to 1,545. (The Census Bureau stopped breaking out prepress and postpress establishments separately in 2012.) It’s not difficult to understand why the number of these establishments has been dropping;  prepress is being absorbed into the printing process itself (especially in digital printing), and more print businesses are acquiring their own finishing capabilities.

Around the Web: Dry Leather. Secret Envelopes. Movies and Typography. Eyewitness Alexa. Informed Identity Theft. Farewell, Mon Kg

Mix-and-match jigsaw puzzles. Postcards from World War I. The bestselling books of 2114. Alexa stars in a reboot of "Rear Window." Friendly skies, unfriendly seats. Weighing in on the kilogram. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Taylor Communications SCS: Transforming to Meet Changing Market Demands

Recognizing the challenges associated with making the digital transformation in customer communications, Taylor Corporation created a new organization called Taylor Communications, Secure & Customer Solutions, Inc. (Taylor Communications SCS). This article explores how Taylor has taken its printing and mailing capabilities to a new level by integrating its communications with advanced digital platforms to enhance the customer experience.

Wide-Format Graphics Make the Magnificent Mile More Magnificent

After a decade in the ad agency world, Shira Kollins took her graphic design and production background and launched SpeedPro Chicago. By taking an active role in local business associations—and being “pleasantly persistent” when it comes to sales and marketing—she has built a business creating cutting-edge display graphics for some of Chicago’s biggest retailers and restaurants.

After Your Print Software Strategic Decision

Once you make a print software decision, you have to enforce it by communicating the strategy clearly and then repeatedly. Your people will forget, your business will evolve, sales people will appear from other solutions trying to convince your team of a different path.

Commercialism

Europeans in general like Americans, American culture, and American entrepreneurship. However, one of the things Europeans often find difficult to understand is the extent to which money seems to influence almost every aspect of American business. Our European correspondent Morten Reitoft of INKISH.TV explains.

Consumers Love Packaging More Than Ever

As if you needed one more reason to add packaging to your product mix! A new study from WestRock, a leading provider of differentiated paper and packaging solutions, shows that consumers are loving packaging more than ever. The study, “2018 Packaging Matters,” outlines the key factors that influence consumer decisions.

Austin Community College Seeks to Spur Industry Growth with Fashion Incubator

Austin Community College in Texas has launched an innovative Fashion Incubator with the goal of creating a real-to-industry learning environment in partnership with the City of Austin, Gerber Technology, and others. This is a unique approach to bringing new talent into the industry and giving new fashion-oriented businesses a jump start.

End of the Season? September 2018 Printing Shipments

Printing shipments for September 2018 came in at $6.52 billion. That’s down from August—and it’s well below August 2017’s $6.76 billion. Are we seeing a new seasonality in the printing industry—or the end of any seasonality?

Around the Web: Virtual Fitting Rooms. Gift Wrap Your Face. Typewriters for Sale. Flying Cars. Music for Cheese. Fungus Footwear. Bionic Mushrooms. Fake News[casters].

Virtual fitting rooms for men. Create customized wrapping paper. Safety apparel for grow lights. Is the flying car on its way? Boots for Mars. Chinese news media introduces AI-based virtual presenters. What’s the deal with “The Piña Colada Song”? All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

New Services: Are You Ready for the Domino Effect?

As you tease out the last bits of efficiency and productivity from your operations, the primary way to continue to grow your business is to add new services. The question is, which ones? How do you make smart decisions about what is best for your business? Sometimes the considerations go deeper than you might think.

InfoTrends’ Global Forecast Data Suggests Growth in Emerging Countries

United States, Western Europe, and Japan accounted for nearly two-thirds of total production printing placements in 2017. This article provides a brief overview of how global placements and print volumes are expected to shift over time.

A Reversal of Fortune: Paper Mills Gain Leverage—October 2018 M&A Activity

New Dragon acquires and opens shuttered paper mill, CJK rolls on in the book segment, Quad takes on LSC Communications, and more…

Is Your Print Business Freewheeling or Process Driven?

If you make decisions about your business based solely on the intuition of you and your staff, you are limiting the growth and the scale of business learning that can take place in your organization.

Key Print Trends in Packaging to 2028

Smithers Pira shares its recent research that looks at the future of packaging to 2028, quantifying the overall market by packaging type and identifying the major emerging drivers of packaging market growth.

Flexo’s Transformation—It’s All About Controlling Variables

Flexography is going through a renaissance. While it has been around since the late 19th century, it has never really had a role in “quality” printing, although that seems to be changing. This change is proving that it can fight off the increased use of digital printing for packaging production with better productivity and lower cost. In this article, David Zwang looks at one of the more significant changes facilitating that transformation.

In The Mail: October 2018—What You Need to Know About Postal Issues

The USPS announces new prices for 2019…Postal Service continues outreach on proposed new Marketing Mail Content Standards…U.S. intends to withdraw from 144-year-old Universal Postal Union Treaty…New Mail.dat version for January price changes.

Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall…Innovative Digital Solutions for Fashion

The digital transformation in textiles and apparel is well underway. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne writes about the drivers for this transformation and how fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff is leveraging digital technologies in unique ways.

Apocalypse Postponed: The State of Retail

Rumors of retail’s death have been greatly exaggerated (to coin a phrase). But there is no doubt that it is changing. We look at how it is changing, and what that means for POP/retail graphics providers.

Screen Printers—2016

In 2016, there were 5,150 total U.S. commercial screen printing establishments. As with most printing categories, the majority have under 10 employees, but screen shops tend to be smaller than other kinds of printing establishments.

Around the Web: New Flame-Retardant Fabric. Blockchains in Space. Direct-to-Object Printing. Pantone’s “Unignorable” Color. Hamster Power.

Don’t spoil the ends of books...or else. Heidelberg heads to InPrint Milan with the Omnifire. A new meaning of the phrase “high on the hog.” Pantone and United Way develop a new color to raise awareness of social issues. Could you power your home with hamsters? All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Where’s the Flash Point for Cloud Software?

Although the industry has not yet hit a “flash point” that would result in the significant growth of cloud-based software solutions, there are indications that this spark may not be far away. This article explores the growth potential and lingering challenges associated with cloud software.

Optimal Use of Your Web-to-Print System

Your web-to-print solution is underutilized. Do all functional areas of your company—sales, customer service, technology—understand all the challenges your current web-to-print system solves? Probably not. You can’t be “solution focused” without understanding the challenges your toolset solves.

New EFI CEO Bill Muir Conducts Third Quarter Financial Analyst Call

With its new CEO in place for just two weeks, I wanted to tune in to the company’s third quarter financial analyst call to get a feel for his approach to the business. This brief article summarizes what I heard and my thoughts on EFI moving forward.

T.J. Maxx Changes Its “Go Paperless” Messaging

Two Sides has reported that brands are moving away from “Go Paperless—Go Green” messaging because of negative publicity around greenwashing. As consumers start to recognize these ads as dishonest and really intended to save companies money, brands are switching from environmental messaging to convenience messaging instead. T.J. Maxx is one of them.

Edifice Rex: Vomela Conquers the Building Wrap

The Vomela Companies, headquartered in St. Paul, Minn., started in 1947 doing promotional product printing. Now, 71 years later, the company has expanded through both organic growth and acquisition to produce retail, POS, décor, event, and fleet graphics for a wide variety of local and national brands and venues. Their most recent project: wrapping 3M’s 14-story corporate headquarters.

Ariel Swedroe: Best Fashion Story Ever!

What were you thinking about at eight years old? Probably not the career that would be your life’s passion! That’s when Ariel Swedroe began her fashion career. At Age 11, she began exploring digitally printed fabrics. Today, at age 15, she has a full-fledged fashion business. But she’s not stopping there! You’ll love this story. 

Adobe Project Paras Extends Photoshop CC Textile Design Capabilities

Designers in textiles and apparel typically use Adobe products to create their designs. But until now, there have not been textile-specific tools to make the task easier. To address this, Adobe has announced Project Paras, a set of tools that allow designers to stay within Photoshop CC and reduce the number of steps required to complete and preview a design. We spoke with Adobe to learn more.

Graphic Arts Employment Continues to Decline; PR Employment Continues to Grow

Overall printing employment dropped from August to September 2018, and on a year-over-year basis is down -1.5%. Non-production printing employment was up slightly, indicating that production staff are the hardest employees to find. PR employment is again the industry bright spot, employment-wise.

Around the Web: Cameras In the Lens. Recycled Textiles in the Ink. Color in The Hulk. Apocalypse Not in Retail.

Get a customized reading list from the Brooklyn Public Library. A new process recycles textile waste into dyestuffs. Poor color management made The Hulk green.  Shatner Claus? Thwarting the “retail apocalypse.” 200 years of Frankenstein. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Personalized Video Part 2: How to Maximize Effectiveness

Personalized video advertising is a relatively new marketing method empowered by the digital revolution. This article is the second in a two-part series. It explores how companies can most effectively use personalized video advertising to reach the widest share of audience.

Leaving Las Vegas: Recapping the SGIA Expo

The final SGIA Expo was a culmination of all the specialty graphics innovations of the past decade or two—with a few signposts (digitally printed, of course) pointing to the future.

Labelexpo 2018 Part 2—Digital Embellishment Going Mainstream

Labelexpo 2018 in Rosemont, Ill., and PRINT 18 in Chicago are over, and it they were pretty exciting shows. The crowds were enthusiastic and buying from early indications. In this second of two parts I will look at how embellishment is moving from a standalone mechanical process to digital mainstream production.

I Remember Charles Wang

Charles Wang, founder of Computer Associates (now called CA Technologies), passed away on Sunday at the age of 74. Frank Romano looks back at a technology—and VDP—pioneer.

Survey Looks at Digital Print Across the Buyer Journey

This survey by NAPCO Research and commissioned by the Specialty Graphic Imaging Association (SGIA) included something rarely seen in digital printing surveys: a look at the use of digital printing across the entire buyer’s journey.  It’s good news. Retailers are embracing digital printing for more than just direct mail.

Kornit Brings HD Direct-to-Garment Printing to Mid-Sized Businesses with Storm HD6

Since launching its high-end Avalanche HD6 direct-to-garment printer and HD upgrade to most Avalanche systems with RAPID ink technology in the first quarter of this year, Kornit Digital has installed or upgraded a whopping 150 HD systems. Now the company has brought HD direct-to-garment technology to within reach of smaller businesses with the launch of the Storm HD6.

Screen Printers 2010–2016

From 2010 to 2016, the number of U.S. commercial screen printing establishments increased from 4,454 to 5,150. Growth in screen printing establishments has been consistent from year to year. Chalk this up to the rise of specialty printing.

Around the Web: A Cheesy Book. “Hello, Death.” Watching The Night Watch. Packaging Design Archive Online.

A new book is nothing but bound slices of cheese. A New Zealand vending machine has a grim message. The Rijksmuseum to livestream a Rembrandt painting restoration. The Museum of London offers a fascinating online archive of package design.

SGIA Expo 2018 Marks the End of an Era—But the Start of an Exciting New One

The SGIA Expo 2018 opened yesterday to large crowds and a completely full exhibition hall. Our recap of Day 1 looks at where SGIA President and CEO Ford Bowers sees the organization and the industry going, and highlights a handful of new product announcements.

Personalized Video Part I: Marketing for Future Generations

Personalized video advertising is a relatively new marketing method empowered by the digital revolution. This article, the first in a two-part series, provides an overview of personalized video advertising and explores the role that age plays in a consumer’s acceptance of the technology.

Want a New Data Point? Try the Weather!

As marketers scramble to increase the depth of their knowledge about every aspect of their customers’ habits, preferences, and patterns, there may be a simple data point that is getting overlooked—the weather. Weather has a direct effect on the sales of 30% of all products and services and is the second biggest influence on consumer behavior. Are your customers taking advantage?

Make Your Print Business a Learning Organization

A print business that learns is one that has a foundation for tracking its business processes and improving on them. From a cultural standpoint, a learning organization has to be able to talk openly about mistakes made from all levels of the organization.

A Greek Sojourn

Our European correspondent Morten Reitoft recently visited Athens, Greece, to shoot a video of a Greek packaging company. It was his first time in that country, and he took the opportunity to talk to some of the people and companies that lived through the country’s recent economic crisis.

Gerber Technology’s Ideation an Inspirational Event for Textile Design and Manufacturing

Senior Editor Cary Sherburne recently traveled to Miami Beach to join more than 300 people at the Gerber Technology Ideation event, the company’s software users’ group. This educational and networking event is in its 20th year. The enthusiasm among the more than 240 customers and prospects in attendance reflects the efforts the company has made to listen to customers and stay ahead of the trends.

For Rocken Graphics, Business Is On the Move

Gibsonton, Fla.’s Rocken Graphics has carved out a unique niche among print service providers: signage and tent graphics for traveling carnivals. We spoke with Kenny Smith, founder of Rocken Graphics, about how he got into this market, as well as how his product offerings extend beyond simple printed graphics.

Around the Web: Know Your Flower Colors. The Mummy Sells! Self-Destructing Art. Unraveling the CVS Receipt. Mac & Cheese Candy Canes.

A new book identifies flowers by color. An old movie poster to sell at auction for $1+ million. Closed captioning glasses for live theater. Christmas comestibles: mac and cheese candy canes and Christmas tree-flavored potato chips. Is the Internet of Things trouble waiting to happen? All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Dead Heat: August 2018 Printing Shipments

Printing shipments for August 2018 came in at $6.89 billion. That’s essentially even with August 2017’s $6.88 billion on an inflation-adjusted basis.

Developing the Right Mix of Client Care

Shifting consumer expectations are increasing the demand for relevant and personalized communications, so it is becoming ever more vital for print service providers to offer their clients the tools and expertise they need to compete via all channels. This article cites recent research from Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends to explore how communication practices are changing.

Personalized Mapping Works...but Why?

There are a lot of ways to personalize a document. What if something as simple as location could nearly double response rates? It can. By personalizing maps based on this single data point, response rates can be outstanding. The question is why?

The Hidden Secrets of Print Software Implementation

The implementation of print software is as important as the software itself. With every software tool there is a foundational knowledge that will help you be more self-sufficient. Those printers who understand their software tools succeed in spite of lack of support from print software vendors.

Labelexpo 2018—Looking at Hardware

Labelexpo 2018 in Rosemont (Chicago area) is over, and it was an exciting show. The crowds were enthusiastic and, from early indications, buying. In this first of two parts, I will look at interesting press hardware trends.

Microban Scentry and Scentry Revive: Innovations in Odor Control for Textiles

Microban recently released Scentry Revive, the second generation of a unique odor control fabric finish that was developed in response to brands seeking a more innovative approach to odor control. This approach could reduce the number of times a piece of clothing needs to be washed, its primary environmental benefit.

Cimpress: Getting Bigger by Staying Small—September 2018 M&A Activity

BuildASign achieves high valuation in strategic sale to Cimpress, Snapfish acquires CafePress at bargain price, regional serial acquirers active in commercial printing segment, and more…

Building to Order—Bergstein: Specialists in Direct to Shape Inkjet Technology

For over 10 years BERGSTEIN has been developing and delivering industrial printers. Their first flatbed printers were based on solvent inks, already printing products with a height up to 30 cm. They put significant investments and developments into small flatbed printers, which are suitable for a huge range of industrial products using UV or LED inks and direct to shape. And in the last 5 years Bergstein is selling solutions for customer in Industrial Single Pass printing.

Commercial Printers—2016

In 2016, there were 18,405 total commercial printing establishments (excluding screen and book printers). Half of them have fewer than 5 employees.

Around the Web: Apparel Manufacturing of the Future. Death by Selfie. Memory-Enhancing Font. Ditching Facebook. Fake News. Next-Gen WiFi.

Print advertising success stories. Sans Forgetica, a font designed for memory retention. Young people are deleting their Facebook app. Social media users expect news to be inaccurate. WiFi 6 is coming; this may not be good news. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Production Dashboards Can Help Keep You “Out of the Mess”

In the printing industry, production dashboards provide critical and timely information for owners, managers, and operators so they can control the production chaos. This article provides a brief overview of available production dashboards and explores how they can simplify the production process.

When Mail Disappears (and Gets Found Again)

Thinking about adding mail tracking to your roster of services? It takes extra cost and effort, so how would you pitch the value to your clients? Case studies from Pitney Bowes show that mail tracking can benefit more than just high-volume mailers looking to tweak in-home delivery dates. It can solve problems and save your clients from major marketing disasters.

Is Graphene Really a Miracle Material?

A great deal is being written about graphene, in textiles and other industries. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne talked to Vorbeck Materials Corp. President & CEO Dr. John Lettow to learn more about what many are characterizing as a miracle material.

Wide-Format and Specialty Graphics at PRINT 18

PRINT has not traditionally been a top venue for wide-format or specialty printing equipment announcements, but does showcase the latest technologies and the applications that can be produced on them, giving commercial printers concrete ideas for exploring new business opportunities.

Taking Stock of Industry Associations: Part Two

Last summer, we took a look at the state of industry associationswith the goal of reminding our members about the many resources available to them to help move their businesses forward. By popular demand, we are now presenting Part Two in order to cover additional organizations that were not included in Part One. I’m sure there are still more!

Marketing Guru Seth Godin Kicks Off PRINT 18

Seth Godin’s keynote encouraged print service providers to eschew commodity printing and focus on selling products that are “remarkable.” “You don’t sell paper and ink,” he said, “you sell a feeling.” It was a fitting theme with which to open PRINT 18.

Darwill’s Inkjet Journey

Hillside, Ill.’s Darwill, Inc., is a 57-year-old direct mail and multi-channel marketing agency. From humble beginnings, the company has grown to be at the forefront of the industry—and one of the early adopters of production inkjet printing technology.

Five Things to Do (Better) When Buying Inkjet

It’s not that an inkjet buyer shouldn’t do these things; it’s that they should do them better. Here are five things to do better so that you know that you made a truly strategic, long-term decision.

@PRINT18 Adds New Dimension to PRINT 18 Trade Show

PRINT18 offers the opportunity for attendees to get their own copy of a unique publication that will be distributed at the show. Not only does it feature stunning variable covers, but it contains a wealth of original thought leadership content that will benefit attendees during the show and long afterward. WhatTheyThink President Eric Vessels explains.

Book Printers—2016

In 2016, there were 421 total book printing establishments. The majority have under 10 employees. This is similar to what we find in general commercial printing—yet different.

Around the Web: Manipulating Buybacks. The Ugliest Color. New Words for Scrabble Fans. Lithophones. How Not to Catch a Plane. 3D Printed Dog Skulls.

Research has identified down to the Pantone number the least attractive color. Merriam-Webster adds 300 new words to the Official Scrabble Dictionary. A nine-year-old dachshund is helped by 3D printing. The pen is still mightier. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Digital Textile Printing: Recent Innovations and Environmental Impact

Ongoing research and forecast data from Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends shows that the digital textile printing market continues to grow. As the industry develops new manufacturing methods to meet this continued growth in demand, it is important to consider the environmental impact of these developments. This analysis explores some recent innovations in digital textile printing and considers the effect that these innovations may have on the environment.

Trend Watch: The Rise of the Blockbuster Self-Promotional Piece

Trish talks with Scott Engle of Graphic Visual Solutions of Greensboro, NC, about the power—and the pressure—of making visually striking (and costly) print capabilities brochures to inspire, educate, and motivate today’s customers.

Labelexpo 2018: First Look

Labelexpo 2018 in Rosemont (Chicago area) was very busy for the first day. This is David Zwang’s initial report from that event and that day. More to come.

Print Ecommerce Data vs. Print MIS Financial Data

The ability to make data-driven decisions is critical to your business success. The various software systems (Print MIS, web-to-print) are your primary tools for managing this data. When you do integrations make sure you keep the control of right data in the right hands.

In The Mail: September 2018—What You Need to Know About Postal Issues 

The logjam on postal promotions and price increases may be broken with confirmation of two members to the USPS Board of Governors…Postal Service proposals could require more stringent requirements for hazardous liquids packaging and limits on marketing mail content...Deadline for new EPS accounts just days away.

Explaining Nonwovens

In this next in the series of articles about technical textiles, Senior Editor Cary Sherburne speaks with Smithers Pira Associate Consultant for Nonwovens Phillip Mango to learn more about nonwovens—what are they, how is the market categorized, and what are some of their uses.

Web-to-Print Product Spotlight: printQ by CloudLab

Jennifer Matt reviews printQ by CloudLab and its modular approach to web-to-print.

Association for PRINT Technologies (APTech) Expands Membership to Print Service Providers

The Association for PRINT Technologies (APTech) is announcing a new print service provider membership category just in time for PRINT 18. If you are going to PRINT, you can get the first year of membership free! We spoke with APTech to find out more.

July 2018 Printing Shipments: We Have Some Good News and Some Bad News

Printing shipments for July 2018 came in at $6.31 billion—that’s down -3.4% from June, but it’s up +2.3% from July 2017. We’ll take whatever victories we can.

Digital Print, Expanding Horizons in Woodworking

The biannual International Woodworking Fair, which took place August 21-25 in Atlanta, Ga., held its inaugural Digital Printing Symposium. While this symposium is new, digital printing has actually been part of the woodworking industry for some time. That said, the need to short-run cost-effective decorative surfaces, as well as ongoing development in digital inkjet printing sector, is creating a perfect storm for the technology to meet woodworking’s market needs.

Around the Web: Odor Eating Fabric. Times Newer Roman. Rest in Personalization. Robot Rumpus. Modeling Movement. In Praise of Luddites. Pen Packaging Put-On.

New odor-capturing fabric finishes. Cheat on your homework with a variant of Times New Roman. New documentary on a prominent “coffin artist.” Turn any object into a robot. Turn 2D videos into 3D objects. The pen is mightier than the packaging. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Key Components of the Digital Textile Printing Industry

Consumer demand and technological innovations continue to drive growth within the apparel and home décor industries. This article outlines the key components of the digital textile printing industry and highlights how mass customization is fueling the adoption of various technologies.

Accurate Press Specifications in Your Print MIS

The process of getting your Print MIS into a “trusted state” can be difficult, but the effort is well worth it. Printers who 100% trust the data in their Print MIS move faster and are more profitable than those who are constantly questioning the data.

Inkjet Printing Builds Towards $100 Billion Market

Value in the world inkjet market will rise at 9.4% across the next five years according to the latest market report The Future of Inkjet Printing to 2023 from Smithers Pira. As the worldwide print market transforms, shifts in buyer demands—short runs, versioned and personalized products—and higher quality are aligning with the capabilities of inkjet. This is making it a key focus for technology developers. Smithers’ analysis shows that across the next five years inkjet will grow, both by deepening its penetration into existing markets, and exploiting new emergent market opportunities.

It’s Working! Anti-Greenwashing Education Is Making a Difference

It’s working! Our industry’s campaign against the false claims of greenwashing is having an impact. Consumers are starting to see claims like “Go Paperless! Go Green!” as false and misleading, and marketers are changing their tactics.

Functional Fabric Finishes: Advances Extend Fabric Utility

In recent years, significant advances have been made in both aesthetic and functional fabric finishes. While some finishes are produced mechanically, the focus of this article, the latest in our series on technical textiles, is on chemical treatments or coatings that add functionality to fabrics for comfort or for specialized uses.

Around the Web: Ancient Art. Avian Economists. Insect Imaging. Deterring Drivers. Planetary Palaver.

How to hurricane-proof your outdoor digital signage. The oldest human drawing. Do parrots know economics? New color from weevils. An optical illusion-based crosswalk thwarts speeders. New arguments for Pluto’s planethood. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Book Printers—2010–2016

In 2010, there were 536 book printing establishments. In the ensuing six years, the establishment count would drop -21%. So says our Commercial Printing Establishments tracker.

Continued Innovations Drive Growth in Digital Textile Printing

Consumer demand and technological innovations are driving growth in the apparel and home décor industries. This article explores some of the ongoing shifts that are occurring in the industry and considers how these shifts are affecting the digital textile market on a global basis.

Print Software Fit to Your Technology Stack

Print software is a powerful tool to create efficiencies in your business. Your success with print software is dependent upon how well you can make the various technologies work and play together in your overall technology stack.

"Burning Down the House"...and What You Might Learn

What would happen if you took the time to imagine what your shop might look like if you could start from scratch? If there were no financial or legacy constraints? What might you do differently from what you have now? What might you learn from walking through that exercise? 

Are Europeans Slower than Americans?

English has become a global language and the de facto language of business, and American culture and American companies have permeated throughout much of Europe. Our European correspondent Morten Reitoft of INKISH.TV looks at the transatlantic difference in language and culture.

Chicago’s Graphic Alliance Makes a Meal Out of Restaurant Signage

Graphic Alliance, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, started as a commercial print shop but quickly adopted wide-format printing and has carved out a substantial niche in restaurant graphics and signage. The company has also expanded into vehicle wrapping and is currently developing residential interior décor services. Richard Romano spoke with founder and CEO Eric Grossman.

Getting Grounded in Geotextiles

This is the fourth installment of a series of articles by Senior Editor Cary Sherburne on technical textiles—how they fit in the industry, why they are important, and interesting new developments. In this installment in the series, Sherburne discusses geotextiles, an important but rarely discussed segment of technical textiles.

It’s Back to School Time—August 2018 M&A Activity

M&A activity in commercial printing, driven by pressure to consolidate, remains robust; packaging is still the hot topic, wide format falters (just a bit), and more…

Around the Web: 3D Printing and Disruption – New Piezo Printing Process – The New Corporate Font – High-Viscosity Printing – Truth in Stock Market Reporting – This Week in Printing History

A special fashion model inspires the design industry. A new font for brands encompasses all brands. A new printer technology can print very viscous liquids. An honest stock report. All that and more in WhatTheyThink's weekly miscellany.

Words of the Profits

Looking at the most recent industry profits data that came out earlier this week, we continue to tell the “tale of two cities.” Low profitability of large printers is dragging down average industry profitability. For the industry as a whole, cracking—or re-cracking—$4 billion in profits is proving to be an elusive goal.

IGAS 2018: The Latest Product News

IGAS 2018 may not get as much attention as some of the other international trade shows, but InfoTrends analysts still found several products that we believe will make an impact on the global print market.