2/16/2004 - Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), Epson and HP, all leaders in home photo printing, announced the formation of the Mobile Imaging and Printing Consortium (MIPC) to drive standards for providing consumers with a simple and spontaneous experience when printing images taken with camera phones.
The companies within the MIPC will implement guidelines for the mobile phone industry to deliver reliable wireless printing solutions to consumers by the second half of 2004. Existing connectivity standards will be used, including Bluetooth™ wireless technology as a wireless solution, printing from memory cards and PictBridge as a wired solution.
"Whether photos are taken on a camera phone or digital camera, HP recognizes the growing demand for standards that make printing at home simple and convenient," said Larry Lesley, senior vice president, Consumer Imaging and Printing, HP. "HP is committed to help create a standard for mobile photo printing that will meet the changing needs of mobile phone users."
Camera phones will account for 55 percent of global handset sales in 2008, up from 15 percent in 2003, according to a recent report by Strategy Analytics.(1) The increasing number of camera phones being sold directly correlates to a rise in the number of photos taken.
"We believe that most images that are printed from camera phones will be printed at home," said David Haueter, analyst, Gartner Dataquest. "A consortium like the MIPC will help to drive standards that will ultimately give consumers easier solutions for printing of their digital photos."
"This alliance represents a valuable collaboration that will significantly benefit both the mobile phone and printer industries," said Katsuichi Shimizu, chief executive, Inkjet Products Operations, Canon. "The result will be a great number of camera phones and printers that can be connected to provide users with an easy and convenient way to print out photos taken with a camera phone."
"Developing standards of communication for camera phone images will not only improve ease of use for customers but also enable us to improve the image quality of the photos printed," said Seiichi Hirano, chief executive, Imaging & Information Product Division, Epson. "This will enhance customers' experience with printing these photos. Joining forces to create a standard in camera phone printing is a win-win both for customers and the companies involved."
Canon, Epson and HP also were among the leaders in digital imaging that proposed the industry standard, PictBridge, enabling consumers to easily print photos by directly connecting digital still cameras to printers without a PC. The MIPC takes that standard one step further by addressing the need for a similar, unified technology for easy home printing from camera phones.
Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is a leader in the field of professional and consumer imaging equipment and information systems. Canon's extensive range of products includes copiers, Bubble Jet and laser printers, cameras, video equipment, medical equipment and semiconductor-manufacturing equipment. Canon's consolidated net sales for fiscal 2003 (ended December 31, 2003) totaled $29.9 billion (at an exchange rate of JPY107 = US$1). Visit the Canon Inc. website at http://www.canon.com/index.html.
Epson increases its corporate value through its innovative and creative culture. Dedicated to providing its customers with digital image innovation, its main product lines comprise information-related equipment, electronic devices, and precision products. The Epson Group is a network of 88,036 employees in 111 companies around the world and had consolidated sales of 1,322 billion yen in the fiscal year ended March 2003. More information can be found at http://www.epson.co.jp/e/.
HP is a technology solutions provider to consumers, businesses and institutions globally. The company's offerings span IT infrastructure, personal computing and access devices, global services and imaging and printing. For the fiscal year ending on Oct. 31, 2003, HP revenue totaled $73.1 billion. More information about HP (NYSE, Nasdaq: HPQ) is available at http://www.hp.com.
(1) Strategy Analytics, Camera Phones Outsell Digital Still Cameras in H1 2003 and Beyond, September 2003.
Bluetooth is a trademark owned by its proprietor and used by Hewlett-Packard Company under license.
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