Print on Demand & Variable Print
Print on Demand (POD) – that is printing only what is required at the time of order – is another use of variable information printing.
An example of print on demand is what you can do on Amazon’s CreateSpace. CreateSpace allows you to post self-publish books, among other media types, for sale – when the order is placed, it then routes to a digital printing press and a book is printed.
The best example of print on demand that I have seen in action are Apple’s Photo Books produced through the Mac Software, iPhoto (a part of the iLife suite of software). You load your digital photos into iPhoto and then can assemble digital albums. Once you have a digital album you can then create a variety of printed products such as photo books, calendars, notecards, etc from the album of photos.
Variable information printing and print on demand are revolutionizing the printing industry. I found this cool blog post on the Replicator blog about variable/print on demand with the 10 cool things you can do with print on demand. Check it out!