The printing industry has been under heavy assault for quite some time now from the Internet and other modern platforms. This has forced the industry to adapt and change in order to survive. Although it’s difficult to say for certain what the future holds for the print industry, there are remarkable developments to watch out for.
In an article written by Sam Shea entitled Association Insights: The Future of Printing, he pinpointed three printing trends to watch out for: 3D printing, printed electronics, and augmented reality.
3D printing is an additive technology (objects are built from scratch) in which a digital model is translated into a physical object through the use of a 3D printer. 3D printers can use different techniques and materials but they are all able to transform digital files into physical materials.
Printed electronics, also referred to as plastic or organic electronics, is a process that involves the creation of electrical devices on different materials. A variety of printing processes can be used in this technique such as flexography, screen printing, gravure, and inkjet. Applications for printed electronics include organic light emitting diode (OLED) displays and lighting, e-paper displays, and solar cells among others.
Augmented reality allows real time overlaying of digital data on the real world. The elements are augmented by computer interfaces. As a result, people’s perception of reality is enhanced. With the help of advanced technology, the information and data about the real world becomes easy to manipulate.
With the print industry constantly evolving, it’s quite hard to become stay updated with all the changes in the market. Shea mention about the Integrated Print Forum in his article, which provides printers and clients solutions on how to incorporate print on the emerging marketing and printing technologies. This year’s Print Forum will be held on October 29–30, 2012, at the Printing Industries of America headquarters in Sewickley, PA.