The tactile printing market in APAC is expected to grow from US$ 476.33 million in 2021 to US$ 845.81 million by 2028; it is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 8.5% from 2021 to 2028. Lightweight, compact, and technologically advanced printers are emerging as a new trend in the tactile printing market. TactPlus is a small, lightweight, and mobile printing solution. It can be easily taken on the go to print documents in Braille anytime, anyplace. As a graphic tactile printer, TactPlus helps volunteers and educational institutions produce high-quality, colored 3D images. It is equipped with a voice guidance feature to make the printing job easy for visually impaired people. Owing to these features, TactPlus was highly acclaimed by visitors at exhibitions and trade shows such as CSUN2 and ATIA3 in the US and Sight City4 in APAC. TactPlus was also exhibited at the National Federation of the Blind in Las Vegas, held during July 2019. The launch more such printers is anticipated to foster the APAC tactile printing market growth in the coming years. Additionally, big efforts to promote tactile graphics adoption in developing countries are among other factors driving the market growth.
Based on application, the APAC tactile printing market for the tactile graphics segment is expected to grow fastest during the forecast period. Tactile graphics include tactile pictures, tactile diagrams, tactile maps, and tactile graphs, i.e., images with raised surfaces, which can be identified by visually impaired persons. Of these, tactile map is the most common application of this printing technology. Perceiving two-dimensional imagery using these graphics helps visually impaired people to experience and learn geography and science. Therefore, tactile printing is being used to incorporate tactile graphics in Braille books, sign boards, and maps, among others. Tiflocentre Vertical has developed and implemented an audio-tactile map (a mnemonic diagram). An audio-tactile map (the facility layout) device can transfer the information about environment in a visual, tactile, and audio format. The patented invention of Vertical LLC is being appreciated by the blind people from Russia and CIS states. The incorporation of audio-tactile information in tactile printing technology is one of the key trends in the market. Thus, the vendors are engaged in upgrading their existing tactile printing technologies in line with the latest trends, to stay competitive in the market.
The APAC is characterized by the presence of many developing countries, improving economies, expanding industrial sector, and huge population. The high-paced urbanization and industrialization, coupled with high investments in industrial and commercial developments, in developing countries of the region is offering ample growth opportunities to the tactile printing market players. However, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is causing havoc in several countries in APAC. China is considered as a leader in the packaging industry, and the economy is likely to decrease up to 50% during and after the pandemic, as the companies with their packaging facilities in China have started shifting their businesses to India. Shutdown of various plants and factories in China is affecting the global supply chains and negatively impacting manufacturing, delivery schedules, and raw material sales. In India, most label printing companies are running at as low as 15–20% working capacity, while manufacturing companies are allowed to run at 50% capacity. Accommodation of workforces, alongside ensuring physical distancing, has been a challenge, and only small percentage of companies have been able to tackle it. In addition, due to sealed borders, the procurement of raw material such as ink, label stock, plates, and dies has become difficult. Schools and universities in the region are closed amid the second wave of COVID-19 outbreak. This has affected the demand for tactile graphics and Braille printed study materials.
The overall APAC tactile printing market size has been derived using both primary and secondary sources. To begin the research process, exhaustive secondary research has been conducted using internal and external sources to obtain qualitative and quantitative information related to the market. The process also serves the purpose of obtaining an overview and forecast for the APAC tactile printing market with respect to all the segments pertaining to the region. Also, multiple primary interviews have been conducted with industry participants and commentators to validate the data, as well as to gain more analytical insights into the topic. The participants of this process include industry experts such as VPs, business development managers, market intelligence managers, and national sales managers, along with external consultants such as valuation experts, research analysts, and key opinion leaders, specializing in the APAC tactile printing market. American Thermoform, Canon Inc, Index Braille, Kanematsu USA, Konica Minolta, Inc., Roland DG Corporation, and ViewPlus Technologies Inc are among the key players operating in the market.