A panel of ID industry experts provided predictions for 2006. One of these glimpses into the future will appear here each day during December.
By Emil Bonaduce, President, Vision Database Systems
Prediction#1: Good News for Fargo, Datacard, Evolis, Magicard, and Nisca – the desire to print text and photos on plastic cards is just not going to go away! Despite the plethora of expanding technologies such as fingerprint, iris, facial, hand geometry, and other biometric techniques, the card wins against ‘cardless’ in 2006. Since biometrics are often included with the card, increased biometric use will stimulate even more carding system sales.
Prediction#2: Penetration of RFID and other contactless technologies like Mifare and Desfire will continue to simmer, but not take off in 2006. While many promising projects are sure to provide a stimulus for switching to the newer technologies, problems with cost and technical issues will keep these trends on a low burn.
Prediction#3: With the new edition of Microsoft Windows postponed until later in 2006, all ID software developers will enjoy one more year of developing on a very familiar platform. Because of its mission critical nature, PC-based ID software will continue to dominate over web-enabled software due to security concerns and erratic internet connections.
Prediction#4: Customers will purchase more tracking systems along with their carding systems in 2006 [Full Disclosure: Our company makes Pocketracker, a mobile access control product]. Whether it is a timeclock system with or without biometrics, a student attendance system, or some other software for tracking people access, tracking system sales will stimulate the sale of more carding systems.
Prediction#5: Customers will continue to avoid more costly card printers and higher end carding system features in 2006. While the ability to print holograms, black light substrates, and other security features are exciting for the industry to promote, overall cost considerations will weigh out over all other concerns.
Prediction#6: There will be a resistance to purchasing digital cameras in excess of 10 megapixels since the photo-realism advantage of analog vs. digital will effectively disappear at that level. If we could only overcome the 300dpi barrier for printing photos on plastic, now, that would be something!
Final Prediction … and this will be a surprise: Margins will stop shrinking or thinly increase in 2006. Because of industry consolidations and modest resistance to commodity pricing trends over the past 5 years, ID manufacturers and their resellers will not only resist price discounting, but will work toward fattening their bottom lines in 2006.
Visit Vision Database Systems on the web at www.visiondatabase.com.