If you are a traditional office technology dealer selling print technology and nothing else, your days are numbered. Would you like to know how much time you have left? Honestly, I don’t know, but trust me, your dealership has an expiration date. Maybe 10 years, maybe 20. Maybe your dealership and others like it will be gone by 2050. More on that later.
Traditional print technology isn’t going to be a money-maker forever. Don’t believe me? Just ask typewriter dealers who never saw the need to sell anything but typewriters. How’s that working out for them?
We are smack dab in the middle of a world where technology is changing at lightning speed and where we could never have imagined 20, or even 10, years ago many of the devices we rely so heavily on today. What’s the next decade or two going to bring? Time will tell, but it’s unlikely to be more print technology, particularly in the office.
The evidence of print’s decline is all around us.
My youngest daughter (21) doesn’t read books other than the occasional college textbook. And even that is going digital. Everything else she reads is on a screen. She’s still well read and in tune with what’s going on in the world. When talking with her, I’m often amazed just how much she knows and how she can back it up with reliable sources. As a voracious reader myself, I used to be disappointed not seeing her with her head buried in a book like I was at her age. The reality is our perception of books and print is changing, and truth be told, even I read more books on the Kindle app on my iPad than in print.
One of the more recent books I read was Dan Brown’s latest offering “Origin.” Admittedly, he’s not an author I would typically read (though I did read “The Da Vinci Code” back when it was the book du jour). However, my other half suggested I read “Origin” after hearing me marveling about what I’d been hearing and reading on artificial intelligence (AI) and the potential impact it will have on our future and on the imaging industry. One of the main characters in the book was an AI””probably the first time that’s ever happened in a book that wasn’t categorized as science fiction. The premise was not so much about a discovery that would reportedly reveal where we came from, but where we are going. Without serving up any spoilers, the turning point for mankind of this evolutionary change””a change driven by technology””is the year 2050. Thus, my earlier reference to 2050.
As we ponder the fate of the dealer of the future within this issue, we don’t need to look that far out, but rather focus on what the next five years has in store for the dealer channel. As we ponder what the dealer of five years from now will look like, we leave you with an important question””one that only you can answer.
Where are you going?
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