FRAMINGHAM, USA: The worldwide hardcopy peripherals market witnessed record high shipments of more than 36.5 million units in the fourth quarter of 2010 (4Q10) and posting 7 percent year over year growth.
According to the International Data Corp. (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Hardcopy Peripherals Tracker, this is the highest quarterly shipments since the fourth quarter of 2007. Overall, the worldwide hardcopy market continues to aggressively transition away from single function into the multifunction space. In 4Q10, the total share of multifunction printers (MFP) was 67 percent, up four points from the previous quarter.
"After experiencing one of the most difficult economic periods in recent memory, the worst is over. It's time for the market to return to normal. For 2011, we anticipate that the recovery will continue at a slow and steady pace. The return to growth will not be uniform across all countries and segments; developed regions are expected to show gradual or steadier activity, while developing regions are projected to show faster and higher growth levels," said Phuong Hang, program manager, Worldwide Quarterly Hardcopy Peripherals Tracker.
The top three vendors – HP, Canon, and Epson – captured more than 75 percent share of the total market in 4Q10. With 15.5 million units shipped, HP exhibited the highest year-over-year growth of 10 percent, followed by Canon's 5 percent and Epson's 2 percent. With the exception of Western Europe, HP enjoyed positive year-over-year growth across all regions.
Inkjet remains the dominant technology in the overall hardcopy peripherals market with close to 24.5 million units shipped, representing 67 percent share. The fourth quarter saw year-over-year inkjet declines in the Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) (APeJ), Middle East & Africa (MEA), and Western Europe markets. The highest year-over year-growth was observed in Latin America at 16 percent.
This quarter marks the highest laser shipments with close to 11 million units shipped. All regions recorded year-over-year growth in this space, with Latin America leading the way with 35 percent growth, and Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) at 25 percent.
Monochrome laser accounted for 83 percent of the laser market with 9 million units shipped in 4Q10. Although the transition to MFP has been observed, monochrome laser printers remain the most prolific type of laser in the office with close to 5.6 million units.
Color laser grew 10 percent year over year to over 1.8 million units, resulting in 17 percent share in the total laser market in 4Q10. Color laser MFP continues to show signs of expansion and has increased its share in the color laser space to by over two points to 48 percent when compared to share seen in the previous quarter.
United States: With only 120K fewer shipments than Western Europe, the region came in 2nd overall with 22 percent market share and 5 percent year-over-year growth. Unlike the double-digit growth experienced in the last two quarters, Q410 saw a modest year-over-year trend of 5 percent growth in laser technology. The inkjet market also recorded a 5 percent year-over-year gain with more than 6.6 million units shipped during the quarter.
Western Europe: After losing out to APeJ during the past two quarters, Western Europe regained its status as the number 1 region for total HCP shipments in Q410 with more than 8 million units shipped. The region grew 2 points to 23 percent share in the worldwide hardcopy peripherals market compared to the previous quarter. This positive trend was driven by the stronger year-over-year growth in laser technology – 10 percent versus -1 percent for inkjet.
Central Eastern Europe & Middle East and Africa (CEMA): The region accounted for 14 percent share of the worldwide market with close to 5 million units, and exhibiting 8 percent year-over-year growth. Double-digit growth in Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) fueled the high growth in the region.
Despite year-over-year growth of -2 percent, inkjet technology regained the top spot in the region after losing out to monochrome laser during 3Q10 with close to 2.5 million units shipped and posting over 50 percent market share. The laser segment increased 22 percent year over year to more than 2.3 million units shipped in the quarter.
Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) (APeJ): For the first time in 2010, APeJ lost its top spot to become the number 3 region in the world in terms of HCP shipments. Despite posting 11 percent year-over-year growth in Q410, the region lost 4 points to 22 percent share in the worldwide market. APeJ continues to be the top ranked region in the worldwide laser market with 30 percent of total shipments, while its inkjet shipments ranked 3rd with 15 percent in the total inkjet market. For the first time ever, Canon inched past HP and achieved the number 1 ranking in the APeJ inkjet market.
Japan: Japan moved up one spot to become the number 6 region in the last quarter of 2010. Japan accounts for 8 percent share of the worldwide market with close to 2.8 million units shipped, and posting 5 percent year-over-year growth. The inkjet segment grew 3 percent year over year to close to 2.4 million units shipped in 4Q10. The last quarter of the year is consistently the highest volume quarter for inkjet shipments as consumers purchase devices to print and send New Year's cards to family and friends. Driven by high demand in the Small and Medium business segment, 4Q10 came in with strong results in the laser space, resulting in more than 380,000 units shipped and 17 percent year-over-year growth.
HP dominated the market with over 15.5 million units shipped in 4Q10, the highest quarterly shipment since the last quarter of 2007. The vendor grew 10 percent year over year, the highest year-over-year trend among the top 5, and gained 2 points to 42.5 percent share in the total worldwide market in 4Q10.
With the exception of the Western European inkjet market, HP showed year-over-year gains across all regions in both inkjet and laser segments during the last quarter of the year. The vendor closed out the year on a high note, posting 15.6 percent year-over-year growth for the full year and outperforming the market average by nearly 4 points.
Despite having the highest shipments ever, Canon finished a distant second overall with close to 6.9 million units and 18.8 percent share in the total hardcopy peripherals market in the fourth quarter. During 4Q10, the vendor grew its shipments 5 percent year over year, gained 2 points in market share sequentially and remained unchanged from a year ago. This quarter marked the first time ever where Canon inched past HP and achieved the number 1 ranking in the APeJ inkjet market.
While achieving stellar results in Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) with 1.4 million units, the vendor's inkjet segment only grew 1% year over year. Laser technology, on the other hand, enjoyed double-digit growth across most regions and resulted in 24 percent year-over-year increase. Canon finished the full year 2010 with 7.5 percent year over year growth in total shipments, nearly 5 points below the market average of 12 percent growth.
Epson held the number three position overall in 4Q10 with more than 5.5 million units shipped and 2 percent year-over-year growth. While showing an increase year over year, the vendor declined 1 point from a year ago to 15.2 percent market share. Canada and the US were Epson's best performing regions, with 46 percent and 30 percent year-over-year growth, respectively. The vendor completed finished 2010 with 9.7 percent year-over-year growth. Once again, Canada and the US were among the top three regions in 2010 with 41 percent and 14 percent, respectively. Latin America was Epson's best performing region for the full year with 45 percent year-over-year growth.
Brother moved up one spot from last quarter, and in 4Q10 was the fourth-ranked vendor in the worldwide hardcopy market with 5.1 percent share and close to 2 million units shipped. The vendor's shipments grew 8 percent year over year in 4Q10 due to stronger gains in the laser segment; 16 percent vs. 1 percent for inkjet. Latin America was Brother's best performing region in 4Q10 for laser shipments with 94 percent year-over-year growth, followed by 57 percent in Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) and 46 percent in Middle East & Africa. Despite posting significant growth in laser, the vendor's 5.5 percent year-over-year increase for the full year 2010 was below the market average of 12 percent.
While having its highest shipments ever, Samsung dropped one spot from last quarter to the number 5 position in the total hardcopy peripherals market. The vendor grew 3 percent year over year during the last quarter of 2010, resulting in more than 1.7 million units shipped and 4.8 percent market share. Samsung's 4Q10 performance was aided by positive growth in Western Europe and Latin America, which grew 22 percent and 28 percent, respectively. The US was Samsung's worst performing region in 4Q10 with a -34 percent year-over-year trend. Samsung outperformed the market by posting 28.2 percent year-over-year growth for full year 2010.