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ISM Article

Supply or Solution Source? The Profits in Scanners

3 Nov, 2008 By: Editorial Staff

Supply or Solution Source? The Profits in Scanners

Dealers of office equipment and imaging supplies know that their customers
are converting more and more hardcopy documents to digital documents for easier
access, storage, retrieval and security. The result has been the pressing need
for companies to implement content management solutions via the use of imaging

Various analysts, such as InfoTrends, divide the document-scanner market into
five key segments to allow more accurate tracking of industry trends. Two key
segments trend for the office group especially: The Workgroup Segment, which has
models priced at $350 - $2,000 and feeding speeds between 10 and 25
pages-per-minute, and The Departmental Segment, where models are priced at
$2,000 - $5,000, and have feeding speeds between 25 and 40 pages-per-minute.
These feeding speeds are generally measured in simplex scans of black & white

In contrast to production scanning solutions, customers of dealers are
showing increasing interest in “distributed scanning” implementations.
Distributed scanning employs lower-volume scanners in multiple locations
throughout an organization to bring the scanning process closer to the point
where documents enter the work process. Distributed scanners allow documents to
be accessible to electronic workflows much sooner, making them easier to route,
process and archive. Clients see the obvious: better cost reduction for not
having to physically store and transport documents, or the risk of losing
documents and having to replace or recreate them. When it comes to securing
sensitive documents, offices experience a higher level of security when they are
not handled by workers outside of the office.

By the year 2011, distributed scanners are forecast to represent about 94% of
unit shipments in the document-scanner market, and production scanners will
comprise 6%. Scanner manufacturers will continue to improve the optimized focus
of their products, to ensure their relevance to customer applications. It’s
apparent that scanning and document management is profitable to the dealer/VAR
and quite productivity enhancing to their clients.

In addition, a digital watermarking solution to provide an audit trail and
ensure document authenticity in the scanning process; time and date stamping to
enable legal compliance data integrity, and intellectual asset protection is
becoming standard, electronic documents are becoming commonplace.

Dealers realize more and more companies are embracing document management
solutions meant to heighten productivity while lessening overall operations
costs, and the installation of document scanners, along with relevant software
systems, will provide a healthy revenue stream for dealer providers to
capitalize on.

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