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FLAAR enjoyed attending Sign Istanbul 2015

Updated September 24, 2015

The organizers of Sign Istanbul are flying two of us from FLAAR Reports to attend their signage and printer expo. We found more wide-format and also many more office toner printer brands and models than we expected and are busy writing up our reports and evaluations.

We will skip Graph Expo (it has shrunk too far, and lecture topics don’t cover much of wide-format inkjet any more).

We will skip all remaining VISCOM expos (sorry, FESPA 2015 in Cologne was bigger than all VISCOM put together if you count the brands available at FESPA). But we hope some future year to re-establish contact with VISCOM (Italy, France, and Germany) since these are good venues to study the local markets in these three countries.

Three of us attended SIGGRAPH 2015 in Los Angeles (computer graphics, especially animation and 3D imaging).

For September, we have focused on Sign Istanbul, with a cleverly co-located 3D PRINTSHOW. For November we will attend SGIA in Atlanta, Georgia, and then ITMA Europe, in Milano, Italy.

In 2016, we will attend SGI (Sign Middle East in Dubai) and then Dr Nicholas Hellmuth will lecture at Graphics of the Americas in Miami. Our main focus in 2016 will be the gigantic printer expo APPPEXPO, March 2016. APPPEXPO has more inkjet printer brands and models than all other printer expos in the world put together!


Giant new expo center in Shanghai

Posted March 11, 2015

APPPEXPO has left the old expo center in Pudong (partially owned or otherwise associated with the owners of Messe Duesseldorf in Germany). APPPEXPO is now in a totally new expo center near the other airport (Hongqiao).

This National Exhibition and Convention Center Shanghai is brand new; I estimate that APPPEXPO is the first expo to fill all four petals of the four-petal flower ground plan. Keep in mind APPPEXPO is co-located with about five other expos, including traditional signage, LED and LCD dynamic digital signage, etc.

The new expo center has the highest hall ceiling (in Hall 3) of any expo building in the world that I have experienced in 15 years of international travel to convention centers. Other halls have high ceilings but not the triple height of Hall 3.

As recently as last week, several people told us that only one section of this expo center was finished. But yesterday, the day before all six co-located signage and printing expos open, all four sections (all eight halls) were open. Today (first day of the expo) we will find out if they have heating (it is rather chilly here, and I estimate it will still be chilly inside).

Downside of being a new convention center is that there are not many hotels nearby (and these are all sold out months ago). We are about 1 hour from the expo center.

But we get to experience lots of Shanghai (five of our team of six here have been to Shanghai before; four of our team have been here many times). Chinese people are friendly; there is an extensive Metro system (there is indeed a stop at the convention center, but it is outside; the station that is physically inside the building is still being worked on).

The organizers of APPPEXPO have done an excellent job in handling such a gigantic printer and signage expo in such a new area of Shanghai. Frankly the expo architecture and the organization are each impressive.


New printer, ink, printable materials,
and print application TRENDs

Posted Feb. 20, 2015

2015 New Technologies in Wide Format Printing TRENDs predicted horizontal 1

Our most popular report so far this year is shown here. It lists and describes the trends in printers, inks, printable materials, and applications.

Covers trends in UV-cured printers, textile printers, wallpaper printers, solvent printers, and latex printers.

Plus lists all the product categories which have failed in the market place (so you can be careful about buying the wrong kind of printer or media).

This new FLAAR Report, by Dr Nicholas Hellmuth, is sent to you automatically if you have a Subscription at TRENDs level (an annual Subscription, payable monthly or quarterly).

Or, you can buy this report for $420 as a test for what it would be like to receive material directly from Dr Nicholas every month all year.

Write FrontDesk "at" to ask to be invoiced to receive this full-color PDF in PowerPoint format (so you and your entire team can review it in your meeting room if you wish).


Graphics of the Americas 2015 is in a few days in Miami

Posted Feb. 19, 2015

GOA is the first printer and signage expo in North America each year. GOA is February 26, 27, and 28, in the nice South Beach area of Miami Beach.

Dr Nicholas Hellmuth will be lecturing in Spanish on one topic, and in English on another topic.

GOA is a nice expo because you can also find toner-based office printers in addition to inkjet printers, T-shirt printers, etc. Too many "signage and printer expos" lack toner-based printers and lack office copiers. So GOA is a nice place to start the year.

After GOA we fly to China for D-PES in Guangzhou and then the impressive APPPEXPO in Shanghai. All this experience makes it possible for us to produce FLAAR Reports on trends in the printing and signage industry.


Fresh information on TRENDs in Printers, Inks, Media & Printheads

Posted Feb. 17, 2015

We have a new concept report in our TRENDs series, shown here. If you have a Subscription at TRENDs level, you have received this PDF already.

If you are a distributor, manufacturer, or leading print shop, then this particular FLAAR Report is a good start. To see all of what you will receive the entire year, you can download the list of all current and forthcoming FLAAR Reports (the private reports, at TRENDs level).

We cover inks, textile printers, UV-cured printers, solvent printers, cutters, laminators and coaters, and all kinds of printable material: signage, giclee, photo, wallpaper, 3D: everything you can think of.

Or, you can order individual TRENDs level, one-by-one (but if you order them all at once, in a Subscription, the price is lower).

Plus, if you pre-pay for 2015, we will send you all the FLAAR Reports from all of 2014 based on your subject preferences (and based on your Subscription level) at no additional cost.


D-PES will open to the world March 6, 7, 8, and 9, in Guangzhou

FLAAR was the first wide-format news agency to notice the first year of D-PES, in Dongguan (about five years ago). Our news about D-PES in Dongguan led to many people coming there, especially the next years.

Dr Nicholas was a guest at the opening ceremony for several years as well.

Then many things changed in 2013 and 2014. We kept attending none the less.

Now, for 2015, even more has changed throughout the entire exhibition industry, especially in Guangzhou and in Shanghai. But D-PES is still in Guangzhou, and still in their March date.

FLAAR Reports is understandably curious to see the dramatic changes in the content and focus of D-PES, now that it has moved more into LED Displays. So Dr Nicholas and at least three of the team will attend D-PES in Guangzhou.


APPPEXPO in Shanghai, for 2015 is now in March

Every year for many years APPPEXPO was in hot July summer in Shanghai. Now it has moved to cooler times in March, and to a totally new expo center (so be sure to change your hotel location).

Six of us from FLAAR will be at APPPEXPO to study inks, media & substrates, textile printers, UV-cured printers, solvent printers, to see if any latex printers have survived besides HP, cutters (flatbed digital, CO2 laser engravers, CNC routers, plasma), laminators & coaters, RIP software, 3D printing and 3D signage applications and LED & LCD dynamic digital signage.

We look forward to seeing you at APPPEXPO. If you wish an appointment for consulting with Dr Nicholas, please contact us in advance at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Sign Istanbul 2014

SGI Dubai (Sign Middle East Dubai) opened Jan 11th and ran through January 13th at The Dubai World Trade Center.

Updated Jan. 2015
Posted Dec. 12, 2014

Sign & Graphic Imaging Middle East is the largest printer trade show in this part of the world. I have been attending this expo since 2013 and it looks like every year the expo is getting bigger and bigger, at such level that during 2015 three members of the FLAAR Reports attended the trade show to cover all the topics in the show.

Nicholas Hellmuth, María Reneé Ayau and Pablo Martinez arrived to Dubai after over 24 hours of flights to attend this major expo at the Dubai World Trade Center and also to attend the Enthralogy Sign Middle East Awards 2015. (January 10, at JW Marriott Marquis hotel, Dubai, UAE and January 11, 2015 Dubai World Trade Centre, UAE) (

FLAAR will make a list of every UV-cured printer, textile printer, T-shirt printer, latex printers, inkjet ink companies and media & substrates.
Their web site is

SGI Dubai 2015


December 3, 2014

By visiting DEAL 2014 expo in Dubai earlier this year, and IAAPA 2014 in Orlando in November, FLAAR Reports has opened a additional (new) applications area (for digital imaging and thus printable material)

We continue the worldwide research for new (and more) applications for printable material. Plus most of the products in the world of theme parts are very three dimensional.

You can receive one, two, three or ALL FOUR of these new reports on IAAPA just by clicking on the SUBSCRIBE button and acknowledging that you wish us to send you these (plus you will continue to get reports (on signage and wide-format printers) all year long during 2015.

Media and Subtraces
Inkjet Ink 3rd-party, After-Market Inks
Inkjet Inks
Wide Format Textile Printers

Sign Istanbul grows again

Updated Sept. 11, 2014
Posted Aug. 1, 2014

We have enjoyed attending Sign Istanbul for many years. Turkey in general and Istanbul in particular are friendly hospitable places to visit. The historical architecture alone is worth the visit.

But what we also enjoy is meeting all our friends and colleagues at Sign Istanbul. Last year the expo did well despite increased competition. This year they cleverly changed dates (so less cold also). The change in dates will result in increased attendance.

Already major brands are making it clear that they fully realize that for this part of the world, Sign Istanbul is the tradition, and is still very much the leader.

We attend Photokina after Istanbul, then Tecnargilla (a ceramics expo). So a busy autumn.

We hope to see you at Sign Istanbul. The first day here we found more textile printers and more textile ink options, and more textile print samples than ISA and GraphExpo in USA both put together (in other words, Sign Istanbul is a major expo).


Sign Istanbul 2014

Giant wide-format Printer Expo was in July in 2014 but will be in March for 2015

Most recently updated Jan. 20, 2015. Previously updated Apr. 28, 2014
First Posted April 3, 2014.

400% more wide-format inkjet printers than Drupa. Umteen times more wide-format inkjet media brands than other printer expos.
And, APPPEXPO signage and advertising trade show has been every July in beautiful Shanghai. But for 2015 APPPEXPO is in March (still in Shanghai).

6 of us from FLAAR Reports will be flying to Shanghai to attend this expo, 11, 12, 13, and 14 March. To get an attendee pass, sign up and register here:

Below are the new FLAAR Reports related with "what to expect" at APPPEXPO 2014. These will give you an idea of what to expect at APPPEXPO 2015.

If you need our reports in spanish or russian please visit this site.

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