by September 4, 2000 0 comments

Year Winner
2000 HP
1999 HP
1998 HP
1997 HP
1996 HP

The high point in this category this year was undoubtedly the
prices. Scanner prices dropped considerably and became affordable even for home
users. USB, which had already made its debut, seems to have come of age this
year. HP, Epson, Umax, Canon–all have USB scanners in their product range,
along with parallel port ones. So, ease of use is leading the way in scanners,
with USB’s true plug-n-play and hot-swap capabilities, compared to the earlier
SCSI scanners and then the parallel port ones. Some scanners also come with two
potions for connectivity. For instance, the Umax Astra 2200 lets you connect it
to the USB port or a SCSI card.

Desktop Scanners

User’s Choice Club  UPI
HP 100
Umax 24

A winner for the past five years, HP scored this year too,
emerging the winner by a wide margin. It’ll take more than USB for other
contenders to put a dent in HP’s score. Umax has also maintained its second
position, but its UPI slipped by a few points from 31 last year to 24 this year.
However, it seems to have created a brand image for its Astra series of
scanners, as some respondents gave this name instead of Umax as their choice.
These two seem to enjoy the highest mindshare, though there are many other
players in the market. Epson has its Perfection range of scanners, but hasn’t
made much of a mark on users yet. Microtek had gained a lot of popularity with
its CIS range of scanners when they were launched, and a lot of debate had
followed over CCD vs CIS scanners. This year, there’s hardly been any buzz in
the arena.

HP enjoys the lead in the current usage of scanners as well,
followed by Umax. Among all regions, the southern region has expressed a huge
interest in buying HP scanners. Last year, HP enjoyed equal support from all
regions.

HP has a strong hold on the scanner market. It would require
a killer marketing effort by others to catch up with HP’s lead. Quality has
been the prime criterion for selecting scanners this year, which is easy to
understand as that’s its prime function. Will there be more nominees next
year? That will have to be scanned.

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