Ricoh Office Machines

Ricoh is one of several companies that produces multifunctional devices, color copiers and printers: their products included integration between various sets of technology.

Ricoh First Competes with Xerox

The first serious competitor to the Xerox copier was put out in 1955 by the Ricoh Company of Japan. It was called the RiCopy 101 Diazo copier. In the 1970s, Ricoh put out a very popular copy machine called the RiCopy DT 1200, the first copy machine to very seriously challenge the dominance of copy machines put out by Xerox.

A Brief History of the Copy Machine

One of the greatest inventions of the 20th century was the copy machine. In fact, it is hard to imagine how businesses would function without them. Copy machines are a multi-billion dollar industry.

The invention of the copy machine goes all the way back to 1937 when Chester Carlson, a New York patent attorney, invented the copying process. He originally called the process Electro-photography but it was changed to Xerography the following year in 1938. However, it took more than ten years for Mr. Carlson to find a company to produce a copy machine using his invention and more than twenty years for the first office version of a copy machine to be manufactured. However, once they were manufactured for the office, they caught on quickly.

The Haloid Company was the first to produce a machine using Mr. Carlson’s invention but eventually this company was renamed the Xerox Corporation when it was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. By 1963, the Xerox Corporation had made $22 million dollars selling office based copy machines. However, back in those days, copy machines were dubbed “Xerox machines.”

By the middle 1970s, several photography companies began jumping into the copy machine business. To overcome customer loyalty to Xerox, Panasonic, Canon, and other companies established a locally supported system where local representatives would sell and service their copy machines for a small region where they really got to know their customers. This strategy proved very effective and Xerox lost significant market share in the copy machine market. As time passed and more companies got involved in producing copy machines, the original term, “Xerox machine,” was replaced with the terms we used today: “copy machine” and “copier.” Only time will tell how these remarkable machines will change in the future as technology advances.

Uni-Pro Business Systems

Uni-Pro Business Systems, Inc. is a factory authorized Toshiba dealer offering color copiers, black and white copy machines, document management solutions, IT and networking services, and service and supplies for most major brands of office printers. Contact us today 337-237-8308.

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