Electronics For Imaging, Inc., announced the availability of its EFI IQ™ suite of cloud and mobile applications with supported EFI VUTEk®, Wide Format, and Nozomi inkjet printers. With this advanced cloud service, EFI™ printer users can monitor production and printer utilisation, including exact device-level consumable tracking data, to reduce downtime, reduce costs and maximise the value of their EFI printer investments. New EFI wide- and superwide-format UV LED printers will include a one-year subscription to EFI IQ. EFI inkjet printer users can also purchase IQ subscriptions for other supported printers. The newly available cloud service for superwide-format production is making its debut at the 31 May - 03 June FESPA Global Print Expo in Berlin.
According to an early user of the cloud service’s new inkjet offering – Dave Brewer, chief technology officer of California-based Image Options – “EFI IQ is a user-friendly tool that gives me better business intelligence to make better decisions.” By monitoring their printer fleets in real time, EFI IQ users can reduce consumable spend, save on labour costs, improve margins, and more.
“Print business leaders often want and benefit from having more-complete knowledge of their plant operations,” said John Henze, vice president of sales and marketing, EFI Fiery. “With EFI IQ, they can have their finger on the pulse of the business. This advanced cloud offering gives print business leaders a detailed, accurate understanding of production operations, which is key to knowing how a company can best meet its customers’ needs at any given point in time.”
The decision to adopt EFI IQ comes down to several key questions owners and managers should ask themselves about business performance, including: Can you accurately measure ink usage? Ink is one of the most expensive consumables and knowing exactly how much ink is consumed in a given time period, on specific media types and on individual jobs, can help you plan and price jobs more effectively.
Is your team able to get real-time production blocking alerts? Production downtime can quickly accumulate if an operator is away working on another task when a stoppage happens on a printer. With IQ, users can set alerts customised to notify individuals who need to be informed of production blocking events. IQ also provides a detailed report on usage, uptime, downtime, etc., delivering verified information managers can use to improve overall productivity.
Are you able to compare performance metrics between printers and shifts? Many production managers don’t have access to the level of data that allows them to make these comparisons. Or, they have to constantly ask operators and other sources for details to find indicators for possible improvements. With EFI IQ, this information is at managers’ fingertips; they can compare performance in real time or customise reports that enable streamlined analysis of historical performance and trends.
Are you able to check production status from anywhere, at any time? Accessing information when away from the production floor often involves contacting a manager or operator who then must stop what he or she is doing to report back. With EFI Go, a remote management intelligence application in the EFI IQ suite, users can check overall production performance, jobs in progress, and many other indicators from any mobile device.
The IQ suite is the only management solution to have a direct connection to EFI printer data, and it gives business leaders powerful tools to handle their day-to-day production and administrative challenges. Plus, the suite’s EFI Go component helps to ensure that managers receive urgent updates wherever they are. At early user site Studio DAR in Bielsko-Biała, Poland, notifications from the mobile application allow managers and operators to keep the company’s EFI Pro 32r+ roll-to-roll printer running as much as possible.
“The EFI Go application,” said Studio DAR Owner Bartosz Przybyla, “displays important warnings, monitors material quantity, or lack thereof, and informs us when the material on a roll is about to run out, which is very useful with long webs.”
With the data insights and notifications EFI Go and the entire EFI IQ suite provide, “print business owners gain the Industry 4.0 advantage they need for more streamlined, efficient and profitable print business management,” said Todd Zimmerman, vice president and general manager of Display Graphics, EFI Inkjet. “The integrations we developed between EFI IQ and our VUTEk and Wide Format inkjet printers elevate what our customers can achieve in operational efficiency and business strategy.”