Reseller News

Flatbed scanner market takes a dive

The flatbed scanner market is suffering a massive decline, according to research from IDC.

IDC's new report, outlining the total Australian scanner market figures for the second half of 2003 (July-December), found that the total scanner market recorded a year-on-year decline of 47.3 per cent, and a 30 per cent sequential drop in unit shipment terms.

Decline in sales has been most significant in the lower-end scanner market, IDC analyst, Michael Sager, said.

“Low-end scanners were mostly used for such things as photo reproduction by people with film-based cameras,” Sager said. “But the pronounced growth in the digital still and video camera markets has removed the need for such a device.”

Another factor that has contributed to the decline in scanner sales is the growth of multi-function printer (MFPs) that have an intergrated scanner in addition to printing, faxing and copying capabilities.

“The growth of this technology is eating into the consumer scanner market,” Sager said.

However, according to the report, there is still share to be had in the high-end scanner market.

“High-end scanners are still needed for their image quality and functionality in such enterprises as graphics houses and publishing,” Sager said.

IDC forecasts that Sales will continue to fall over the next 12 months.

“The market will contract further as these other devices continue to cannibalise the scanner market,” Sager said.

Market share actually grew in the 2001-2002 period, according to IDC research, however this was mostly due to the Y2K “refresh” where many enterprises updated their equipment for the new millennium.

“In the first half of 2003, we saw the MFP market grow and, almost like a mirror effect, flatbed scanner sales dropped," he said.

Canon currently leads the market with a 57.6 per cent share of units shipped in the second half of 2003, followed by HP (18.2 per cent). Epson is third (11.3 per cent).