Digital technology has created a profound impact on the manufacturing industry. Apart from automation, digitization is also responsible for improving the manufacturing processes. One of the areas changed dramatically due to digital technology is tile manufacturing. It has created a more streamlined and economical process.

But even more importantly, it has brought in true innovation and style into the way tiles are manufactured. The technology in digitally printing tiles has evolved with the development of digital technology itself. Today digital wall tiles manufacturers are experimenting with new designs, layout and even textures.

History
Digital technology in tile manufacturing has been present for some time now. It was used to carry out traditional printing. Screen printing was the medium and it had its own advantages. As a successor to manual tile manufacturing, it brought in automation, an ability to reproduce design on tiles. However, there were disadvantages.

The tiles were a simple reproduction of simple designs. The set-up costs were quite high and manufacturing was still far from precise. This was not a very high standard printing. Colours were muted or often not very precise. It did, however, bring in economy of scale and automation. But it suffered from a fatal flaw the inability to truly innovate. Lack of innovation is a death knell for any design process. This entire scenario changed with inkjet printing. Suddenly, printing was nothing like we knew before.

The change came in Europe post-2008 when recession hit the property market. The slide in the market directly affected the trade in tiles since, the realty market was its biggest client. What the tiling industry needed was something that would make their product stands out, while bringing economy into production processes. The inkjet printing introduced just that.

Digital wall tiles manufacturers found that they could produce extremely refined and life-like designs, while keeping their production costs low. Suddenly, manufacturers known for tile making, such as Spain found the perfect mechanism to make tiles. With digital printing they finally had multiple advantages:

Short runtime:
Digital tile manufacturing takes the fraction of the time required to produce anything close to the polished finish it offers. In traditional methods, one would have to work painstakingly to reproduce designs. This was particularly important in the new business environment where time was of essence and more and more clients wanted quick results.

Life-like designs:
Digital tile printing is by far one of the most superior methods when it comes to getting design on tile. Modern techniques have advanced enough to replicate an almost life-like effect. Not only can we print an exact image, we can even create a 3D effect. This effect is more pronounced than any tiling technique we have achieved so far.

Manufacturers had found that truly innovative and unique product that took tiles from just a kitchen-bathroom wall cover to a stunning art piece. For the first time we were using technology to produce a mass-product that promised design exclusivity. Earlier, this was only possible with master craftsmen who catered to a very exclusive clientele.

Cutting costs:
With digital processes, manufacturers were able to cut costs drastically. Digital printing itself is a relatively simple process. After the initial investment in machine, the manufacturer had access to a very handy machine for complete customisation or mass-production as the need arose. In the long run, they were able to cut production costs and streamline processes.

Working with cost-effective material:
With its ability to replicate to a precise degree, manufacturers are now able to work with the more cost-effective ceramic, giving it the visually appeal of more expensive and exclusive natural stones like marble. It also means that manufacturers were able to offer premium and luxury looking tiles that were virtually indistinguishable from the luxury natural stones at a fraction of its cost. In short, they are offering both cost benefits and design innovation to their buyers.

As the property market went into recession, secondary industries like tile manufacturing were looking for new avenues and innovations. Digital tile making was the answer to this emerging situation. Digital wall tiles manufacturing is clearly the new frontier in tile manufacturing, the exciting future where anything is possible!