IDC Predicts Increased Number of Digital Pictures Snapped by Affluent PC Users Will Boost Global Photo Printing

FRAMINGHAM, MA – JANUARY 4, 2006 – Affluent PC users with the disposable income and interest in digital photography will continue to capture more and more images, resulting in an increase in the average number of images printed, IDC reveals in two new Image Bible studies. The number of images captured, shared, and received will grow at a sustained average of 24% from 2004 to 2009, boosting the worldwide growth of total prints volume to an average of 14% over the same forecast period. Inexpensive flash memory cards will be the key driver for both the digital image creation and image printing forecasts, as well as a prevalence of imaging technologies in mobile phones, combined with a decline in print pricing.

"Images captured from camera phones and other devices will not contribute as much as those captured with digital cameras, and camera phones will eventually become more video-centric devices," said Christopher Chute, senior analyst with IDC's Digital Imaging Solutions and Services program. "The promise of digital photography lies with customized personal printing solutions, as digital camera users will move away from commodity printing toward creative printing solutions."

Among key findings of IDC's two studies are the following:

— Sharing images captured from any device remains one of the top imaging applications worldwide.

— While digital camera users will still create the most images over the forecast period, camera phone users will take close to 40% of the total images captured worldwide in 2009.

— European users will contribute more to the printing volumes, due to the increased prevalence of digital still cameras in that region.

— Internet-to-retail printing will grow the most (55%) from 2005 to 2009.

— Printing revenue share will begin to equalize between the home and retail environments by 2009.

While IDC's study Worldwide Digital Image 2005-2009 Forecast: The Image Capture and Share Bible (IDC #34490) quantifies the number of images captured, shared, and received by capture device users (i.e., digital camera, scanner, camera phone, digital camcorder, and film camera) for consumers and businesses by key regions, IDC's Worldwide Digital Image Print 2005-2009 Forecast: The Image Printing Bible (IDC #34488) focuses specifically on images printed by the same users. This second study covers images printed by consumer digital still and film camera users, scanner users, digital camcorder users, and camera phone users.

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