Xerox vs. Canon: Copy That

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Difference between Xerox and Canon

Photocopiers have revolutionized the way business offices work. Information is available instantly to more people in the organization thus saving time and work in an efficient manner. At first the machines could only photocopy black and white copies, but technology innovations made it soon possible to copy color paper into color copies. For example, in this way charts which relied on illustrative color schemes could be copied and distributed to their target audience.

New functions have been added over the years to make copiers easier to use and more versatile. Page scanning and emailing allow the user to save paper resources and send the information faster. Xerox and Canon are two of the biggest manufacturers of photocopiers.


The Beginning

Xerox was founded in 1906 in New York. The company was called The Haloid Photographic Company which produced photographic paper and equipment. The name was preserved until 1961 when the company was renamed Xerox. Xerox released the first photocopier – Xerox 914 - in 1959. The product was very successful, bringing revenues of $60 million US dollars by the end of 1961. In 1963, Xerox launched the first desktop copier. Many other releases followed establishing Xerox as a leading office solutions provider.

Canon was founded in 1937 in Tokyo, Japan. The company manufactured cameras, photocopiers, steppers and computer printers. Canon launched the first photocopier Canofax 1000 in 1965. They released various models which were considered innovative and produced good sales, but they still faced heavy competition from Xerox. With a new managing director and the new color photocopier, Canon had a growth in sales between 1975 and 1985. This continued to bring important revenues in over the years.


Xerox has 130,000 employees working in 160 countries. The company’s revenues were of $22 billion US dollars in 2009 from which 5% was dedicated to the support of research and development activities.

Canon has 166,980 employees working on all continents. The company had revenues of $35 billion US dollars in 2009.


The popular photocopiers Xerox Work Centre series are available for color copying tasks, black and white copying up to 30 pages per minute and black and white copying exceeding 30 pages per minute. With higher speed and increased output control, office work becomes so much easier.

Canon relies on the powerful multifunctional imageRunner series for a higher quality office experience. The color copier controller and the imagePass server technology ensure increased productivity, meeting the needs of the most demanding work environments. The company also sells color copiers and black and white copiers.

Similarities and Differences

  • Xerox was founded in 1906 in the United States. Canon was founded in 1937 in Japan.
  • Xerox and Canon have more than 100,000 employees and operate on all continents. Both companies reported revenues higher than $20 billion US dollars.
  • Xerox relies on the WorkCentre series, while Canon markets the imageRunner series.

Which copier breaks down less often?
  • Xerox
  • Canon

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