The photocopier was invented by Chester Carlson in October 1937. The process was initially called Electro Photography, and was only later renamed as Xerography in 1938.
The first known photocopy is known as the 10-22-38, and the photocopying process is regarded as one of the major innovations of the 20th Century. Today, Chester Carlson is revered as the founder of a billion dollar industry the world over.
Xerography – Its Development
A decade after the invention of xerography, Carlson founded The Haloid. This may not immediately strike any chords with consumers, however this business would later be renamed the Xerox Corporation.
The First Office Copier
The first automated Xerox photocopier was invented in 1955 by Harold Xerox. Within three years the first true photocopier made its way into mainstream commercial environments. By 1980 the first electronic push button photography made its way into offices across the UK and beyond.
The impact of the photocopier cannot be underestimated. A technological revolution decades before the internet, the annual income of Xerox rocketed from $2million to more than $22million. This was a phenomenal amount even by today’s standards.
The Market Evolves
As the world became used to a Xerox machine, new terminology entered commercial consciousness. The Xerox machine evolved into a photocopier. This led to one of the most hard-fought and notable marketing battles of the 20th Century.
In early 1955 Rioch emerged as a direct competitor to Xerox by developing the RiCopy 101 and within twenty years Rioch had developed the award-winning RiCopy DT 1200. Upon seeing consumer appetite for the products brands such as Minolta, Panasonic, Konica and Sharp developed printers to rival each other.
Today Xerox is considered to be one of the foremost leaders in the copier industry. With continual technological revolutions, who knows where the next decades may take us.