Makers and sellers of ink jet printers and supplies can take heart from a recent Lyra Research report while photofinishers can only read and weep. As the number of households with digital cameras increases, home printing of digital photos will continue to be the trend for the majority of users. Worldwide, at-home printing sales are projected to increase from US$7.1 billion in 2003 to US$9.9 billion in 2008.
Whenever a market undergoes a technological change of the magnitude facing amateur photography, existing products and their suppliers invariably fall vulnerable to dislocation. Change begets change, and the question for those already in such markets is whether to embrace the new technology or search for ways to lengthen the lifespan of the old. For those specializing in the new technology, the question is how far and how fast to reach into the new marketplace. Technological change doesn’t merely present new opportunity; it demands a response.