PARIS: CANON HAS ANNOUNCED that it is joining the raft of technology companies attempting to take on the Internet of Things (IoT) through what it is calling the 'Imaging of Things'.
Speaking at the firm's EXPO 2015 event in Paris on Tuesday, Canon CEO Fujio Mitarai talked up the firm's global vision for the future as the IoT becomes more pervasive.
"Canon is showing how the world of imaging is expanding rapidly in the age of the IoT," said Mitarai.
"In the future nearly everything will be connected through smart devices. These rely on built-in cameras or sensors and the data they generate. As a result, Canon predicts that the IoT will largely depend on the ‘Imaging of Things'."
To take on this future, Mitarai plans to overhaul Canon's business structure to build a network of smaller Canon companies and thus create an "ecosystem of innovation".
The CEO said that these companies have been designed to "harness innovation and creative talents from across the regions", and will include more investment in what Canon does but on a more local level in different regions across the world, as opposed to all of the innovation being created in Tokyo, as it is at the moment.
This will allow "regional independence and international collaboration [to be] put into practice", Mitarai said.
In this new "network of companies", Mitarai explained that each regional headquarters will manage local R&D and manufacturing, as well as service and support customised to its market.
In Europe, the smaller Canon companies will focus on printing and network video surveillance, and the firm has already brought in specialists in these business areas such as Océ, Axis and Milestone Systems.
Mitarai said that, along with its global reputation for cameras, this will make Canon the largest printing and network video surveillance company in the world.
On a B2B level, the move is also about helping other firms build new competitive advantages and improve services for their own customers.
"We are changing our own operation model and go to market structure to build more expertise in these areas and connect with our customers," said Jeppe Frandsen, head of the Production Printing Group at Canon Europe.
"Our customers are changing so we are now looking at a way customers are changing to what their customers want - new ways to do business together."
Canon's EXPO 2015 event was also an opportunity for the company to show off many of the latest projects from its R&D centre in Tokyo for the first time in Europe.
These tie in with the firm's new focus as it launches smaller companies in more regional areas, and include a range of innovative practices such as responding to society's monitoring needs, 3D printing as part of a partnership with 3D Systems in Europe, and graphic arts via investment in digital print technologies. µ
Much a (dil)do about nothing
Neither the time nor the face
The tiny tweaks are coming thick and fast now
Gitting more secure