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28 Sep 2017

APeJ Surpasses USA as the Top Shipment Market for Inkjet Printers in 2017Q2, IDC Reports

SINGAPORE, September 28th, 2017 – According to the latest IDC Asia Pacific Quarterly Hardcopy Peripherals Tracker, the total hardcopy peripherals shipment in 2017Q2 for the Asia Pacific region excluding Japan (APeJ) was 7.84 million units. Inkjet and laser unit shipments both expanded during the quarter, growing 2.2% and 4.9% year-on-year (YOY) respectively. For the first time, APeJ had surpassed United States of America (USA) to become the number one inkjet market in the world in terms of shipment volume.

PRC was a strong contributor to APeJ becoming the top inkjet market in the world as we saw a strong growth in the volume of inkjet shipment from the 6.18 online shopping festival, which posted a 17.8% YOY growth versus the same time last year. The shipment volume for laser printers continue to stay strong in the PRC market due to the rapid expansion of the small-medium business (SMB) segment.

On the other hand, the Southeast Asia sub-region, which currently contributes the highest inkjet shipment volume in APeJ, continued to see a strong shift from ink cartridge to ink tank from the end users in the second quarter of 2017. This shift is brought upon by the low cost per page benefit of ink tank and aggressive promotions from vendors. In fact, in 2017Q2, the ink tank to ink cartridge ratio had reached an all-time high and had finally crossed the 50% mark to make Southeast Asia a truly ink tank dominant market.

India had suffered a decline in both inkjet and laser this 2017Q2, declining by -6.8% and -3.8% YOY, respectively. This was largely due to market’s apprehension on the GST implementation. There was a high level of destocking in the channels, where they refused to take in any further shipment from vendors in order to avoid a high level of leftover stock when the GST gets implemented.

“Taking over USA in terms of inkjet unit shipment this quarter shows that the demand for inkjet in the region is becoming stronger than ever. Concurrently, we are also seeing an increase in demand for ink tank printers as the ratio for ink tank vs ink cartridge had reached an all time high of 38%. More businesses are buying ink tank to take advantage of the low printing cost,” says Yexi Liao, Market Analyst of IDC Asia/Pacific’s Image Printing and Document Solutions (IPDS) team.

“The laser market also see a stronger growth within higher value speed segments of 30+ ppm (printer per minute), as some vendors are struggling with profitability within the low-end speed segments of 1-30 ppm and want to shift up in order to help them protect their profit margin,” according to Liao.

Here are some other key highlights and upcoming trends to note in the APeJ hardcopy peripherals market this 2017Q2:

  • The top five hardcopy peripherals companies account for 81% of the market. The dominance of main players is expected to continue. We also do not expect to see any new hardcopy peripherals companies entering the market that will be able to make a significant difference to the market.
  • Inkjet market continues to shift more towards ink tank printers. Ink tank printers continues to grow at a rapid rate, recording a 17.2% YoY growth in 2017Q2. The growth is largely due to the consumer and SMB segments, where they are more cost conscious and prefer the low cost per page benefit that ink tank technology can provide. ASEAN remains to be the top market for both inkjet and ink tank printers.
  • Laser market in APeJ continues to outperform the rest of the world. Propelled by the growing demand for print devices in China, APeJ had recorded the highest YoY growth rate in the world for the fourth consecutive quarter.
  • Online sales is at an all time high. Due to the 6.18 online shopping festival and the strengthening partnership between vendors and key etailers such as and Tmall, online purchasing continued to expand outside of consumers segment; channels are shifting to make their purchases online due to the low product pricing and ease of delivery provided by the etailers.
  • Mature markets continue to shift away from print. Mature markets such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, and Korea had all continued to decline in their overall shipment in 2017Q2 as a result of digitization and the high adoption rate of smart devices in these markets.

For inquiries on this tracker research, please contact your IDC account manager or Shari Jane Jansen at For media inquiries, please contact Tessa Rago or Alvin Afuang

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Companies Covered

HP Inc., Canon Inc., Seiko Epson Corp., Samsung, Brother Industries, Ltd.

Regions Covered

Asia Pacific

Topics Covered


For more information, contact:

Yexi Liao
+65 6829 7732

Alvin Afuang
+63917 7974586

Theresa Rago
+65 9159 3053