According to InfoTrends' most recent market placement data, the United States and Western European markets for printers and multifunctional devices, which includes consumer, office, and production units, grew despite continued economic challenges. Total market placements in the United States rose 5.2% from 27.5 million units in 2009 to 28.9 million in 2010. Western Europe saw similar rates growing 4.1% from 26.3 million units in 2009 to 27.4 million units in 2010.
InfoTrends analysts Robert Palmer (U.S.) and Zac Butcher (Western Europe) caution, "Growth in 2010 should be viewed as a slight recovery from what has been two very difficult and challenging prior years. While we saw some recovery and increase in placements, the market is nowhere near its peak which we saw in 2007."
Much of the growth in 2010 can be attributed to the increase in placements of inkjet devices. Inkjet increased 3.8% in the United States and 2.7% in Western Europe, fueled by continued growth in the business inkjet segment. Sales of business inkjet devices rose 13.9% in the United States and 4.7% in Western Europe. Inkjet vendors continue to reposition their inkjet technology for business applications, and the number of new inkjet models aimed at SOHO, small business, or enterprise customers grew significantly in 2010.
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