SHORT EXPOSURES: May 1

Falling compact sales hit Canon…Leica’s monochrome-only camera…Photo Direct promises faster photo restoration…Samsung drops marketshare despite success…LG G4 takes ‘epic selfies’…iPhone and Mac ‘cannibalising’ iPad…

Falling compact sales hits Canon hard
Canon Inc has reported first-quarter net profit falling by almost a third, citing a collapse in demand for compact digital cameras.

Profit fell to 33.93 billion yen ($361 million) in January-March, compared to analysts’ expectations of more than 50 billion yen.

Canon’s compact sales are down nearly 70 percent since 2008 – the year after Apple Inc released its iPhone.

Canon lowered its 2015 forecast to 7 million compact cameras from 7.8 million, or 23 percent less than 2014. It is projecting sales of interchangeable lens cameras at 5.8 million rather than 6.4 million, representing a 9.4 percent decline against 2014.

Leica’s new monochrome-only camera here in May
leica__Leica has announced local availability this month of a new monochrome-only camera, the Leica M Monochrom (Typ 246).

New features include a high-performance Leica Maestro image processor and a buffer memory expanded to 2GB.

It has a full-frame 24-megapixel black-and-white sensor without a low-cut filter. In addition to the M-Lens portfolio, almost all lenses of the Leica R series can now be used on the Leica M Monochrom via a dedicated adapter

The camera body is manufactured from a high-strength magnesium alloy and the LCD screen is scratch-resistant and ‘almost unbreakable’.

RRP for the Leica M Monochrom (Typ 246) is RRP $10,500.

Photo Direct promises speedy photo restoration
PhotoDirect
Photo Direct has announced that its photo restoration service will run at least two days faster, promising a turnaround time of three to five days on all jobs.

The speedy new turnaround time means that Photo Direct account holders can still promote the service in-store for Mothers Day, which you had better not forget is on May 10.

The service started in 2006 and is available to photo retailers, framing businesses or print/copy centres that have signed up to a free Photo Direct account.

There’s no upfront cost associated with the restoration service – shops only pay once the job is sent back to the store for printing, Photo Direct says. All it asks is that the service is promoted in-store by printing one of the downloadable poster files in the ‘Marketing Materials’ tab on the Photo Direct website. (Or feature the service in blogs, e-newsletters, etc)

Call 1300 364 817 or click here.

Samsung drops market share despite smartphone success
In the first quarter of 2015 Samsung regained the number one position in smartphone sales from Apple, despite its market share dropping to 24 percent from 31 percent a year earlier.

Strategy Analytics reports that Samsung shipped 83.2 million smartphones in the first quarter, compared to Apple’s reduced 61.2 million.

Both companies were tied with shipments in the fourth quarter of 2014, with 74.5 million smartphones each, according to Strategy Analytics.

Despite Samsung leading the charge in shipments, its financials haven’t experienced a boost, with revenue in its mobile division down by a fifth and operating profit dropping 57 percent.

Overall, the report says that ‘global smartphone growth’ has slowed to 21 percent from 33 percent due to ‘increased penetration and maturity of key markets’ in China, US, and Europe.

LG G4 smartphone takes ‘epic selfies’
LGg4The latest Android smartphone by LG is equipped with two powerful cameras, ideal for those wanting ‘professional-like’ smartphone cameras that can take ‘epic selfies’.

The G4 rear-facing camera boasts a 16 megapixel camera with a f1.8 lens. And the front camera – the one used for selfies – is 8 megapixels, with a ‘Gesture Shot’ function which takes a photo when a ‘simple hand gesture’ is made. Pick a hand gesture…any hand gesture….

The camera also has ‘Laser Auto Focus Technology’ that allows the smartphone to be more responsive, and a 5.5-inch display to view them on. It will be available in June, with no price announced.

iPhone and Mac sales ‘cannibalising’ iPad
Speaking of 5.5-inch displays…As smartphone screens become bigger, customers are failing to differentiate them from a tablet, marketing research company NPD Group reports.

Many marketing research companies speculated that this was the reason for declining iPad sales, but it has taken until now for Apple to admit it. Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a phone call with investors and media that ‘we’re clearly seeing cannibalisation (in iPad sales) from the iPhone, and on the other side from the Mac.’

Brad Akyuz, director of connected intellegience at NPD, echoed this statement.

‘One of the major reasons we expect to see the cellular tablet connection growth slow down over the next couple of years is the cannibalisation by larger smartphone screens,’ he said.

Meh. Tablet, phablet, schmablet.


One thought on “SHORT EXPOSURES: May 1

  1. The decline in the camera business is often directed at the ubiquitous smartphone. It is a factor but not the major reason.
    The camera business has been seriously damaged by greed, leading to hardcore worldwide discounting and instability. As greed is not a constructive emotion the decline will continue.
    Gone are the people on the floor (except for a small percentage of professionals left) who could constructively guide people on the correct choice of equipment, give them ongoing support and even training on the product and be available for personal attention when needed. There is now an army of people who bought at discount, who can’t follow the moronic instruction books, don’t understand their gear and simply turn to a smartphone. For most of them, photography will never be craft that engenders increasing use of the camera and greater need for accessories and services – and of course, in time better more expensive cameras.
    The decline in dollars is inevitable as more people judge their gear by 10-cent prints and only a small and decreasing percentage are elevated to the next level(s). It is a tragedy of misunderstood marketing and downright greed – but it is too late now; the trend is there and horse has not only bolted but cannot be even seen in the distance.
    Alan Small

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