When it comes to disseminating information to a large number of people, no other medium is more sought after than print. The modern form of the printing services industry is an outcome of years of transformation and development in printing modes and techniques. Today it caters to a vast range of requirements of clients, which transcends printing.
With the invention of the first printing press by Gutenberg in the 1400’s, mass printing services in the form of relief printing developed into a full fledged industrial service. In relief printing the printed image appears elevated from the base, just as you see in a rubber stamp. These days relief printing is not as widely practised and has very restricted uses.
The industry has seen major transformation in the printing techniques used, and these changes were mostly propelled by progress in technology. Modern printing methods have advanced to a great extent, and each method has its own role and function. Most customers are in fact dazed by the abundance of printing options available to them.
One of the most popular printing methods in the market today is offset printing. In this technique, the image is transmitted onto paper from a metal plate on which the image is first printed by the use of limited amount of ink. This cheap and fast method of printing is highly preferred and used when mass printing is needed.
Other printing techniques that have come up with advancements in technology are electrostatic printing, which resembles photocopying, and thermal printing, which follows a system of selective heating of coated thermal paper.
However, digital printing is the most recent technological advancement in this field. As is clear from its name, it includes image creation and editing on a computer, and then this computer generated image is eventually printed after review. This method is flawless and fast, but it is best suited only for a limited number of prints. As this technique allows each print to be customized it has resulted in some novel uses like computer form printing, where items like bills and receipts are printed on a fixed layout but with differing contents for each client.
Another important development in printing has dawned with the arrival of the internet. Most printing firms have their own websites that permit clients to easily place orders and check out designs and samples, without them having to walk or drive all the way to the firm’s premises for this purpose.
Printing has always taken giant leaps whenever there has been a technological innovation. The great news is that this trend of change is going to continue unabated in the future too, bringing favourable advancements to improve efficiency and lower costs.