Weak demand hits domestic printer, MFP sales: report

By Lauly Li  /  Staff writer

Mon, Oct 06, 2014 - Page 13

Domestic sales of printers and multifunctional peripherals (MFP) declined 7 percent quarterly in the second quarter because of weak demand in high-priced inkjet MFPs, according to a report released by International Data Corp (IDC) on Thursday.

A total of 165,461 printers were sold in Taiwan during the quarter ending June 30, IDC’s report showed.

That also represented a 7 percent contraction from the same quarter last year, according to the report.

The research firm attributed weak demand to sluggish demand for inkjet machines, which fell 17 percent quarter-on-quarter to 95,640 units in the second quarter. That was a 21 percent annual decline.

The sales figure was the lowest over the past few years, IDC said. Inkject printers and MFPs accounts for 61 percent of the nation’s total printer and MFP market, according to IDC.

To spur demand, “printer manufacturers Hewlett-Packard Co (HP) and Brother have launched new cost-saving printers to cater to price-sensitive users,” IDC Taiwan analyst Lin Hsuan-jui (林璿瑞) said in the report.

Epson Corp also launched a new range of cost-saving printers to broaden its product lineup, Lin said.

Lin expected printers with costs lower than NT$0.2 per page to become mainstream gradually.

However, sales of laser printers grew 13 percent quarter-on-quarter, or an annual expansion of 26 percent, to 62,067 units in the second quarter, IDC’s report showed.

The growth was driven by robust demand for entry-level printers that cost less than NT$2,000 per unit and MFP with a price tag of about NT$4,000, IDC Taiwan market analyst Apples Lu (呂孟蘋) said in the report.

In addition, replacement demand from the nation’s major convenience store operators also helped boost shipments, Lu said.

Lu expected that demand for laser printers and MFPs would continue to show robust demand in the second half due to strong seasonal demand and new government procurement projects.