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Digital Prints to Shift From Home to Retail in `05

Newtonville, Mass. – Between 2002 and 2005 a substantial shift will occur in digital camera owners’ printing habitsdriving digital printing from the home to retail or online processing sites, according to a report from Lyra Research.

Last year about 80 percent of all digital photos were printed at home, but by 2005 Lyra sees home printing accounting for 53 percent of all prints made, with retail locations and online processing sites moving in on the business.

This shift will occur, in part, due to an increase in the volume of prints being made as more and more mass market consumers purchase digital cameras. The report stated that total direct prints from consumer digital cameras will grow from 4.5 billion prints in 2001 to 11.8 billion prints in 2005 worldwide.

Another reason for this change in printing behavior, according to Lyra, is that consumers are finding the feature-packed digital camera with complex photo-printing software too complicated. Consumers, the study noted, want both image capture and output functions simplified.

On the technology side, the report claimed that today’s photos are produced on a variety of media, including silver-halide, ink jet, and dye-sub media. A review of worldwide media ratios revealed that silver-halide will continue to be the dominant technology, dropping to just below 90 percent of total prints in 2005.

The report, Opportunities and Challenges in Consumer Online Photosharing and Photoprocessing, studied trends in consumer behavior.