The total market for finished barcode scanners (dedicated handheld and fixed-position devices) reached an estimated $1.4 billion in 2010, with revenues of $1.5 billion projected for 2011, according to new data from ABI Research.
Research director Michael Liard recalls, “As in many other industries, 2008 was very difficult (handheld and stationary scanner revenues dipped by 20+% and about 30% respectively); 2009 presented a mixed picture, with the second half of the year showing signs of market recovery. The trend continued throughout 2010 with key leading vendors reporting very strong quarter-over-quarter growth rates, including robust growth for product categories that were hit hard with double-digit losses in 2009 such as laser scanners.”
ABI Research believes that the greatest near-term growth will be realized in the handheld 2D imager product category, currently led by vendors Datalogic, Honeywell Scanning & Mobility, and Motorola Solutions. Until recently imagers were prohibitively expensive which limited their uptake, but the price gap has narrowed enough to make them, in some applications, viable alternatives to traditional laser scanners. “Imagers,” says Liard, “are the future of the handheld barcode scanner market.”
Another consequence of falling imager cost is the increased use of 2D barcodes in industrial environments such as packaging, logistics, manufacturing, and others that require 2D decoding capabilities and rugged in-line/fixed position solutions.
While 1D barcodes and laser scanners will continue to be seen for some time in the retail sector, the future lies with 2D barcodes and imagers there too. Support for mobile barcode scanning applications among retailers is helping drive adoption of handheld 2D imagers. Mobile barcode scanning is also driving shipments to the hospitality and transit sectors.
Healthcare is another key growth vertical in this market, where 1D and 2D barcodes can be used everywhere from patients’ wristbands to pharmaceutical packaging to medical equipment.
ABI Research’s Barcode Scanning Market Data provides a breakdown analysis of major product categories and classes of barcode scanners as well as of the verticals they support. Regional spending is also reported. The focus of this report is finished, dedicated standalone stationary (fixed) and hands-free barcode scanners.
This Market Data product is part of the firm’s Barcode Scanning Research Service, which also includes Research Reports, ABI Insights, and analyst inquiry support.
ABI Research provides in-depth analysis and quantitative forecasting of trends in global connectivity and other emerging technologies. From offices in North America, Europe and Asia, ABI Research’s worldwide team of experts advises thousands of decision makers through 29 research and advisory services. Est. 1990. For more information visit www.abiresearch.com, or call +1.516.624.2500.
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