“We are seeing strong customer momentum in the past year alongside industry challenges created by the pandemic, with Industry 4.0 being a driving force of growth for Indigo customers who have embraced high-automation practices and adopt eCommerce driven web-to-print business practices,” said Haim Levit, vice-president and general manager, HP Indigo.
HP attributes part of this momentum in particular, from continued strong growth in labels and packaging direct print volume growing 36% over 2019 levels and the commercial sector’s continued recovery from pandemic headwinds.
PrintOS Site Flow, an end-to-end production management solution for achieving zero-touch automation has fueled an explosive growth in customer order traffic through 2021. Connecting to over 600 brands globally, HP customers tapped into a myriad of online order systems and ecommerce platforms. With Site Flow each PSP automatically receives, produces and ships an unlimited number of jobs per day. Site Flow reduces bottlenecks, touchpoints and labor-dollars, while being device and product independent; many of the core principles on which Industry 4.0 was built on.
Hundreds of PSPs are operating Site Flow daily, which saw a 65% increase in job traffic in 2021. More than 460 million items were processed through the secure online platform, operating in 45 countries to deliver print products such as photo books, calendars, invitations, and greeting cards.
New Industry 4.0 solutions
Industry 4.0 practices are allowing HP Indigo print service providers to deliver thousands of digital print jobs every day. As a result, HP continues to invest and expand business possibilities for PSPs.
HP has also announced the PrintOS Integration Hub @ hp.io, a portal where HP provides technical information on how to integrate with HP Indigo devices and solutions, and achieve automation across vendor solutions. Due to the upswing in ecommerce orders, printers need to increase automation through multiple systems, spanning from submission, printing, finishing and fulfillment solutions, through to shipping and tracking.
“Automation is the only way to consistently deliver high volumes of short run jobs while meeting customer’s quality and schedule expectations” said Gershon Alon, head of HP Indigo Solutions. “Customers are struggling to hire and maintain skilled personnel. Cross-vendor automation increases employees’ efficiency and enables the production of much more work with existing staff and resources.”
An example of cross-vendor automation is the improved integration between the PrintOS Production Pro DFE for Commercial Print and Heidelberg Prinect, which automates production and avoids human errors. Customers can now maintain a unified automated workflow, for both their analogue jobs and their digital Indigo press jobs, and manage them from their Heidelberg MIS.
Automating colour is also a key focus area for HP Indigo. On top of the already-supported Idealliance G7 colour certification, PrintOS Colour Beat now also automates Fogra colour certification for new-generation HP Indigo commercial and labels-and-packaging presses including the HP indigo 100K, HP Indigo 15K, HP Indigo 12000 VP, HP Indigo 25K and HP Indigo 35K.
The FograCert PSD Colour Data allows print service providers to get a fully automated verification to the most widely used Fogra colour standards requested by print buyers and brands, validating that the press meets the highest color standards. With a touch of a button. The compliance of a given print job is certified against Fogra PSD, ProcessStandard Digital (ISO/TS 15311-2) and can be easily communicated with the print buyer, the brand or the QA team.
The Automatic Alert Agent 2.0 for HP Indigo Series 4 digital presses (HP Indigo 12000 and 15K) is an inline inspection system that scans every printed sheet and compares it to its digital print file, automatically identifying possible print defects. AAA 2.0 now automatically diverts defective sheets to scrap and reprints them, all in real time with no human intervention, and no interruption to production. The system leverages advanced Industry 4.0 Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) algorithms, increasing accuracy and speed, to provide productivity and profitability for PSPs.