The unavoidable truth of technological progress is that it will incur casualties
This cold hard fact will be as apparent to the suppliers of fax machines, as it once was to those whose business it was to sell VHS players, tape-decks and horse-and-carriages.
Intermedium’sresearch suggests that the end may well be nigh for the fax machine, a symbol of 1980s office networking, within the government ICT sector.
In the 2009-10 financial year, only one contract was published for the supply of fax machines to the Australian Government, at a total value of $54,747.
This could be the end point in a steady decline in the number and total value of fax supply arrangements that has taken place in the years since 2003-04.
In 2003-04 Intermediumrecorded 136 fax contracts.
The total value of these contracts was $1,869,056, nearly 35 times as much as the most recent 12-month total.
The most rapid decline has taken place in the years since 2007. In 2007-08 there were 20 fax machine contracts issued, totaling $901,428. In 2008-09 this number halved to 10 with a total value of $227,974.
But while the day of the fax may have passed, they will lurk within the office for a few years yet, as a component of Multi –Function Devices, which incorporate printing, scanning and fax functions.