The world’s going digital; ain’t no doubt about it—at least in my humble opinion. Digital technology has a firm foothold in printing, especially in the front end of the process—in prepress.
Computer-to-plate is firmly entrenched in offset printing and is well on its way in flexo (see “CTP Flexo: Preaching to the Printers,” p. 16). The reasons for this encroachment into prepress are primarily based on cost savings and quality improvement. The future growth of digital printing for packaging and labeling will not only embrace these aspects, but will also include the capability for unique, distinctive graphic and text content that is just not feasible (a.k.a., economical) with more conventional printing.