"Smartphones Destroying High-End Camera Sales"

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hdeyong

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According to this, next week we'll see wedding photographers out there shooting the happy occasion with their iPhone. Oh, and it seems that all interchangeable lens cameras are dslr's. One thing that the digital age has definitely produced is a whole lotta people who have no idea what they're talking, (or writing), about.
Thank goodness I don't much care anyway.
 

Chan Tran

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According to this, next week we'll see wedding photographers out there shooting the happy occasion with their iPhone. Oh, and it seems that all interchangeable lens cameras are dslr's. One thing that the digital age has definitely produced is a whole lotta people who have no idea what they're talking, (or writing), about.
Thank goodness I don't much care anyway.

I am with you on this! There are a whole lot of cameras out there which are called either SLR or rangefinder but don't have an SLR viewfinder nor a rangefinder.
 

Fixcinater

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I am with you on this! There are a whole lot of cameras out there which are called either SLR or rangefinder but don't have an SLR viewfinder nor a rangefinder.

Please cite sources.
 

kb3lms

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"We are seeing tough figures at the moment, but I don't think this will last forever,'' said Nikon Chief Financial Officer Junichi Itoh. "There still is potential demand, and I think China is the key."

Wow, I wish I could lay my hands on original quote, but substitute "Kodak" for "Nikon" in this quote and some one at Kodak said this same exact thing about 15 years ago. Make no mistake - it's the death knell.

"We are reinforcing and expanding our commitment to 35mm film and cameras in emerging markets because of the significant demand from China, India, Eastern Europe and Latin America," Masson said. "The 35 mm film industry continues to grow at double-digit rates in those markets."

-- Kodak Press Release from January 13, 2004
http://www.kodak.com/US/en/corp/pressReleases/pr20040113-01.shtml

We all have seen how well that worked out. Oops! (Not the quote I was thinking of but close enough)

And then this by the Associated Press published August 26, 2005.

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) - Eastman Kodak Co., battling a steep drop in demand for photographic film and paper, is scaling back film manufacturing in China and closing various businesses in Rochester and West Virginia, eliminating about 1,000 jobs.
<snip>
It said manufacturing of consumer film products will be cut back in Xiamen, China.

I found it here: http://lubbockonline.com/stories/082605/bus_082605015.shtml

Actually, for the whole article, where it says "dSLR" put "film" and where it says "smartphone" put "dSLR" and it sounds like any article on how digital SLRs are going to "win" from 10-12 years ago.

"Taking photos with smartphones and editing them with apps is like cooking with cheap ingredients and a lot of artificial flavoring," said Canon spokesman Takafumi Hongo to The Journal. "Using interchangeable cameras is like slow food cooked with natural, genuine ingredients."

Yep, heard that too!

Next Canon and Nikon will be "focusing on core competencies." That's like putting you in charge of the United Way campaign at work. Sorry guys!

See below
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Eric Rose

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Alas, camera owners far out number photographers ...

Amen to that brother!! Hey if people are expressing themselves or capturing memories with smartphones all the power to them. For most it's about creating something that is meaningful to themselves and those close to them. It's a device not a religious icon. Serious hobbyists such as those that frequent APUG have always been in the minority of those creating photographs. Most people creating photographic images use what is fast and easy. The majors like Canon and Nikon have for the most part burned out many semi-serious hobbyists with their constant new camera releases. Most except the really stupid have learned they were duped by the manufacturers when they were sucked into the pixel wars. I feel that many photographers have decided the digi cam they have right now will be just fine for some time to come. Rather than feeling they need to upgrade bi-yearly or less due to the BS pixel war, they will go back to the upgrade cycle that was more or less the same as it was during the Nikon F days. The Canon and Nikon business plan can no longer support this shift. I can see them becoming boutique camera manufacturers like Leica in the very near future.
 

wiltw

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The point and shoots of the 1980's and 1990's shrank the market for high end SLR long before the smartphone came along. The smartphones have ruined things for everyone, as young folks cannot be bothered to carry a second device along...they've already integrated the GPS (ruining the market for separate GPS) they have integrated music playing, ruining the market for separate MP4 players which had ruined the market of CD players.
 

kiwivagabond

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yes I so agree, that often makes me laugh, all the looks people love on Iphone apps, or other digital equivalents....they all imitate old analogue styles and historic processes. I tried to learn the real thing, and when you do, you know digital is way easier, but the real thing is even more beautiful.
 

hoffy

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Is it really smart phones taking over, or is it the "me too" people, who bought into expensive DSLR systems (where's in the past they would have been happy with a P&S) finally realising that owning such a camera does not automatically mean better pictures.

I have said it before, high end photo gear is the tech hobby of the noughties (just like camcorders were in the late 80's and 90's). Go to any event and note how many white lenses are hanging off the end of a camera. Then think back 20 years and compare.

The noughties are over and they are all moving onto the next "big thing".
 

polyglot

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Good cameras will always be status symbols, just the types preferred and the social signals they send will change over time. Phones are wiping out the P&S market (just like digi-P&Ses wiped out 35mm film for casual happy-snaps) but I don't believe they'll make much dent in the DSLR market because they serve such very different purposes at different quality levels.

The big Japanese DSLR manufacturers had major (and, I think, ahistorical) boomtime in the 2000's when DSLRs became affordable so a whole bunch of people entered the market that previously couldn't afford to. People like me (16-25 years olds with little income) who were not previously able to afford to do serious photography suddenly could for about $1000. Now everyone who wants a DSLR has got one or can buy-in secondhand for under $500, so sales are levelling off and maybe falling soon; it's got nothing to do (IMHO) with phones but rather the market is just saturated. What do you expect to happen when there are more cameras than people who (think they) care about photography?

Despite the APUG trolls banging on about digital being disposable, plenty of people buy a DSLR and use it for a decade or more. Most decent DSLRs should run happily for 20 years unless abused, especially for the typical/casual 2000 actuations/year user. Hell, I shoot a fair bit and my DSLR is 6 years old; my mother's is 7 and there's no way she'll buy a new one until it breaks. Probably I'll just give her mine in a couple of years and it'll go forever. Just like my RZ is about 25 years old and I'll probably still be using the same body in another 20 years unless I drop it.
 

ntenny

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Same phenomenon as film p&s cameras undercutting the market for consumer SLRs in the 1980s. Most people simply don't need the flexibility of a system camera for casual snapshot use.

-NT
 

Tebbiebear

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You also have to remember that many of the higher end DSLR and at least one "higher end" mirrorless camera had sales boosts thanks to people buying for video. The Canon 5d mark2/3, the 7d and the Panasonic GH1/GH2 were purchased in very large numbers buy guys wanting the larger sensors for video. That market has mostly moved on to the BlackMagic Designs Cinema cameras and to a lesser degree the Red Scarlet. That is bound to hurt Canon and Panasonic still camera sales. Combine that loss at the top the movement from DSLR to cameras like the Fuji X series and Olympus Micro4/3 cameras and I can easily see a significant hit.

Also the "megapixel war" seems to be over, at least in the mind of the public. Most people are happy enough with 10 or 12 megapixel and don't have any desire to shoot in RAW. When cameras like the D3200 with, IIRC 24MP, come out and they don't see a big jump in quality when they post on facebook or instagram why would they ever feel like they need to upgrade?
 

Tom1956

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I "ain't got no" cellphone. I live dangerously. Could break down in my truck in the middle of the countryside at night and be genuinely stuck. Just like the old days.
 
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Vindication!

...just kidding. Who cares?
 
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Did you see the latest Nikon "Df" DSLR announced on 11/5? I can't tell whether that's foresight, hindsight, or just plain desperation.

Across the room sitting on the table it looks for all the world like a cross between an FE/FM and an F3. Doesn't do video. But it reportedly will usefully mount any Nikon F lens back to 1959. (Although there is, alas, no rabbit ears capability...)

:confused:

Ken
 

Maris

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Ohhhh, so all the forums here on APUG devoted to cameras and other equipment aren't photography? I gotcha down.

Smartphones and cameras in general do not uniquely identify photography. Cameras are just devices constructed to form real optical images which then are employed, by one process or another, to yield a lookable picture. The original cameras, camera obscuras and camera lucidas, offered an image which could be hand traced to make a picture. Video cameras produced electronic files which could be displayed as movies on a monitor. Modern digital cameras produce electronic files than can also be displayed on a monitor screen or printed out. That's what people mostly want, views to capture and pictures to share, with no skill or effort beyond being able to point, and nil expense to punish failure. Why bother with a DSLR when a smartphone does this just fine. But all of this tide of electronic pictures has no legitimate claim over photography.

There is a general idleness and complacency of thought that assumes any picture made with a camera, even a smartphone, at the front end of the picture-making process is a photograph.

Most casual references to digital pictures as photographs are not motivated by fraud but are a product of ignorance. It's just another of those cultural deceptions that are so widespread and familiar that they largely pass beneath care or notice; except perhaps at APUG.

The unique thing about photography isn't cameras or lookable pictures made and displayed any old how. It is that photographs are generated exclusively from light-sensitive materials and as a consequence their authority to describe subject matter comes not from resemblance but from direct physical causation.
 

dehk

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You no longer have to leave disposable cameras on the table at a wedding receptions...
 

pdeeh

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Eric Rose said:
Most except the really stupid have learned they were duped by the manufacturers when they were sucked into the pixel wars. I feel that many photographers have decided the digi cam they have right now will be just fine for some time to come.

I frequent digital forums as well as APUG, and my recent experience is that there is no slackening in people's appetite for "better cameras", more pixels, sharper lenses, higher ISOs, and so on. Discussions about the two or three recent new "full frame" digital cameras absolutely dominate the scene. (Capitalism marches on, I suppose)

I'm not having a poke at digital cameras, digital photography or digital photographers, by the way. Just making an observation that my experience is different.

If "high end" digital photography goes the boutique route, well ... it'll be just like film is now, really ...
 

hoffy

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I frequent digital forums as well as APUG, and my recent experience is that there is no slackening in people's appetite for "better cameras", more pixels, sharper lenses, higher ISOs, and so on. Discussions about the two or three recent new "full frame" digital cameras absolutely dominate the scene. (Capitalism marches on, I suppose)

I'm not having a poke at digital cameras, digital photography or digital photographers, by the way. Just making an observation that my experience is different.

If "high end" digital photography goes the boutique route, well ... it'll be just like film is now, really ...

I tend to agree with you there except for maybe the pixels. I think a lot of people kind of see the pixel rating as mere noise (every pun intended). I suppose it depends on what forums you read (for example, somewhere like DP review is going to be all about the gear). The DF mentioned above is only 16MP (which is not much for a 35mm sensor - I refuse to call it a so called full frame). That being said, things like high ISO performance is a real world gain and IMHO actually quite a useful feature that is being continually developed.

As for the Df...well, that is a bit of a mystery camera. I am not going to hide the fact that I possibly will be in the market for a new digital camera within the next 12 months (wash my mouth out with soap). If and when I buy a digital, I want to ensure that I future proof it as much as I can. I would tend to think that the camera that I buy next will last me a good while. I have looked at it (& even discussed it at length with a sales guy that I know quite well) and the DF brings nothing more to the table. The only thing going for it that I can see is its retro looks and maybe the fact it shares the sensor with a camera that is nearly double its already excessive price.

But there is something else that I feel will mean the end of SLR's and that is the implementation of electronic viewfinders, such as those used by Sony. The more moveable parts that are eliminated, the more efficiencies can be made with both frame rates and reliability. In the end, I see it as a win win for that type of photography. These EVF's are still in their infancy (for high end gear). Give them a few more years and people will be saying "Pentawhat?" (well, except for us on who still like to place pieces of film in the back of their cameras!)

(OK, that's enough for now - I am sure I am on the bubble for getting this thread closed and myself banned).
 
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