Kayell is embarking on a three-city roadshow to debut its new retail photo printing options, featuring Epson Surelab D3000 and D700 dry inkjet printers, Epson wide format printers and a new-to-Australia kiosk hardware/software suite from Di Support, based in Germany
Di Support’s biometric passport system, ID Pro, and the Epson Surecolor F2000 direct-to-garment printer will also be featured at the roadshow, which sees Kayell presenting its first comprehensive retail printing solution for photo retailers.
‘We have been distributing Epson Surelabs since their inception but the one thing we didn’t have was a full kiosk solution for retailers,’ said Kayell’s national sales manager, Josh Harvey.
‘Now we are combining Epson Surelabs with Di Support’s new smart and sophisticated retail system,’ he said.
While most readers are familiar with Epson Surelab D700 and D3000 inkjet ‘dry labs’, Di Support is a less familiar name in Australia, although it is one of Europe’s largest ‘white label’ photo retailing software providors, with 6000 kiosk installations.
Di Support, which has been operating since 2000, offers a complete portfolio of photo service software across retail, web and mobile phone app platforms, as well as a sophisticated order management system which covers: evaluating sales figures, checking order statistics, optimising marketing by evaluating customer behaviour, routing products and orders to particular producers and output devices, updating product range and pricing, changing advertising content, etc.
The latest Di Support kiosk, the G6 (pictured left), uses a 22-inch touch screen which responds to ‘gestures’ such as pinching and stretching, familiar to ‘digital native’ smartphone users. It has an Epson receipt printer built-in. The screen can be tilted flat so it can be operated like a tablet device.
It links with wet minilabs, dry labs and wide format inkjet printers and can be configured to connect to remote fulfilment centres to extend the product range.
One of the more interesting features is the ability to present a personalised product, say a mug, in a 3D preview (below right). It also has a simplified system for ordering multiple sizes or quantities of an individual image.
With several customers in Australia already using the Epson Surelab Di Support combination, Josh said that ‘the response has been great so far. The Di Support software is easy to understand, to navigate and to use.’
He said it’s also easy to add new customised products to the system – for example one Kayell customer has added photo crystals to their product range.
‘It takes about 10 minutes to add a custom selection – customers can easily do it themselves.’
He sees potential customers coming from the ranks of specialist retailers looking to upgrade from older equipment – either kiosks or full printing systems – and even event photographers and studios looking for an inexpensive, easy-to-use ‘in-house’ printing capability.
Kayell will be offering Di Support software on simple purchase model – without any on going commissions on sales. Purchase price comes with 12-months maintenance and support, with a three-year maintenance and support contract offered.
Hardware – kiosks and printing equipment – will be marketed on a similar basis.
Kathy Steinhardt at Kingaroy Photo Lab has been using a retail printing set-up consisting of two Di Support G6 kiosks, an Epson D700 and an Epson 7890 wide format printer, since mid-way through last year, swapping over from an ageing Noritsu wet lab and Kodak G4 kiosks.
‘I’m thoroughly enjoying it,’ she told ProCounter. There’s a consistency to the prints and no colour shifts, I don’t have to calibrate and the order server software is easy to use. The retrieval of old orders (for reprints) is a great feature.
‘Customers say it’s so much easier to use. It makes much more sense to navigate. We have Harvey Norman and Big W in Kingaroy and customers comment that it is easier [than Fujifilm kiosk software].
‘The screens are magnificent, and (touchscreen) pinching an swiping makes much more sense’.
She said there was a whole host of products she hadn’t even made active so far – things like accordion prints, collages and calendars – as she hadn’t fully explored the utility of the software.
Compatibility with smartphones is a particular strength, she said, coming from G4 kiosks with no wireless capability. She said there was no problem with Bluetooth connectivity but that the cable link to iPhones was ‘one of the best things about it’ as it ‘connects brilliantly and is fast, too, and downloads lots of photos at once .’
‘We are picking up a lot of business with phones because we are hands-on. We help about 50 percent of customers on the kiosks and that often leads to extra services like downloading image collections from phones to DVD.;’
From a cost perspective Kathy said the new system was pretty much comparable on a per print basis with the old silver halide lab. She noted that there was very little wastage with the D700 compared to a wet lab. As to throughput, she said the D700 was adequate most of the time, and that if business grew it was a simple matter to slot another unit into her system for around $4000.
Brisbane: March 15-16 Warehouse Studios. Click here to register
Sydney: March 22-23, Kayell showroom. Click here to register
Melbourne: April 12 -13 Kayell showroon. Click here to register.
Kayell will be inviting customers to one-on-one scheduled appointments at the roadshows.