Sunday, May 13, 2012
Ricoh "Where's the ICE"?
All right stop, Collaborate and listen
Ice is back with my brand new invention
Something grabs a hold of me tightly
First four lines of "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice, which brings me to Ricoh ICE (Integrated Cloud Environment) solution or the lack of it. I was floored when I read the first three lines of the lyrics and I was tempted to change the lyrics for this blog.
Last May 2011 at the Ricoh Vision Dealer Meeting we were told about Ricoh new ICE solution. The solution in short would consist of three cloud solutions that would have an annual fee (need to make it monthly guys), the three packages were Silver and you get scan2email, scan2evernote (evernote provides it own OCE & searchable pdf), the GOLD packages adds scan2google docs, scan2box of OCR and Excel files (good for only 2 users and 4GB of space, PLATINUM increases users to 20 and adds an additional 16GB of space.
Last May Ricoh gave us a preview of ICE at the 2011 Ricoh Convergence Dealer Show, I didn't go to the booth and I should have because I'm thinking ICE was not even running at the time (I could be wrong). If you're going to run ICE or any othr Cloud solutions on a Ricoh MFP you'll need order the browser unit for $170, I'm thinking that this should be standard with all of the systems, but a recent rumor had told me that the official launch is now slated for November of this year and not a Convergence which is set for the first week of June in Vegas.
I've been told that Ricoh Europe has had the browser units running on the European Ricoh MFP's for over a year now. I had know of one solution provider UDOCX is already supported Ricoh and Xerox systems with a "Cloud Based Document Processing Service" and today I just found Fabasoft which offers Cloud Integration to Ricoh MFP's.
I believe that Cloud Integration of MFP's offers end users a multitude of choices and services that can make companies just as productive as their employees. While I'm at it I also believe that there needs to be open open operating systems for all MFP's. Manufacturers needs to adopt the Andriod OS and I think you'll see terrific apps that will be developed for MFP's.
But, what I really wanted to talk about is that there are applications available right now that will allow your MFP to have some sizzle. Dropbox, it's free, you can get 2GB of storage and guess what? You can set this up as a scan2dropbox folder right on the MFP. It's awesome, no more scanning to folder or scanning to email or emailing the document back to myself. Wait.... Dropbox also has an Android app! How cool is that, all of my files on my phone! Walk up to the MFP press my dropbox button and away it goes. How about adding a PS option to your customers MFP's, include it in the deal and make sure they set it up. Then you'll be able to print from your dropbox account when you're at the customers office .
How about the UDOCX solution it's available in the US, it's not expensive and you'll have scan2sharepoint, cloud printing and scan2fax!
Point is, for most of us that are selling Ricoh or Savin, we're get our butts kicked with similar solutions that are already in place from other manufacturers. Take the time to check out Dropbox, UDOCX and Fabasoft you'll be glad you did and you'll be on your way to selling cloud solutions.
Betcha I don't get an invite next year either :)