Scanning the Scanner Horizon

Eclipsed by multifunction units that produce faxes, printed documents, copies and scanned images, single purpose flatbed scanners are still found in nearly half of Internet households, according to InfoTrends Research Group, Inc.

The firm found that 61 percent of U.S. Internet households own some type of scanning device – either a flatbed, all-in-one (AIO), film, or other type of scanner. Segmentation of InfoTrends’ survey of nearly 6,500 U.S. Internet households revealed that 49 percent own a flatbed scanner, and 18 percent own an AIO device.

“Scanning is still a popular activity among U.S. Internet households,” says Kerry Flatley, senior research analyst at InfoTrends Research Group. “While the penetration of flatbed scanners has not increased over 2002, the penetration of AIOs is rising quickly. In 2003, 30 percent of U.S. Internet scanning device households said they own an AIO, up from 21 percent in 2001. Consumers are eager to purchase AIOs because given their functionality, AIOs are relatively inexpensive and space-saving.”

InfoTrends found that 12 percent of scanning device owners have both an AIO and a flatbed scanner. “While some scanning device owners still have both a flatbed scanner and an AIO, data from the survey suggests that this trend will not last and most of these owners will make AIOs their primary scanner,” says Ms. Flatley.

Worldwide scanner revenues reached nearly $2.9 billion in 2002, with North America and Europe accounting for 37 percent and 36 percent, respectively. While shipments in North America and Europe have already peaked, shipments in other regions are expected to steadily increase through 2007. By 2007, InfoTrends expects that the rest of the world will account for 35 percent of the total worldwide scanner market

HP continues to be the worldwide market leader. Market share rankings vary by region and country, but Canon, Epson, and Visioneer also continue to capture substantial market share in nearly every region.

The momentum created in 2002 is expected to continue, InfoTrends predicts, guiding the market toward greater adoption of document imaging and management solutions. Scanner penetration into corporate office environments is especially important to the growth of the document scanning industry and is expected to begin in earnest in the next few years.

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