By ROB WAUGH
Smartphone cameras now take 27% of photos
Pundits have been predicting the death of slim point-and-shoot cameras for years, as smartphones eat into their market, and camera makers increasingly move towards SLR and other larger-lensed models.
But recent U.S. data from retail analysts NPD hints that the writing really is on the wall for slim cameras. The percentage of photos taken on smartphones such as Apple iPhone has gone from 17 per cent last year to 27 per cent this year, as their cameras increasingly match the performance of dedicated compacts.
Sales of point-and-shoots dropped by 17 per cent in the same period.
Photos taken using smartphones such as Apple’s iPhone 4S have risen to 27 per cent of the total – as cameras fall to 44 per cent
‘People are more likely to use their phones when capturing spontaneous moments, but for important events, single purpose cameras are still largely the device of choice,’ said an analyst
The big losers are camcorders and cheaper point-and-shoot cameras said NPD’s retail tracking service.
But the market for cameras as a whole is not about to die out.
Sales of SLRs and other detachable-lens cameras lens went up by 12 percent – and the new larger lensed compacts championed by manufacturers such as Sony and Panasonic grew 16 per cent.
‘There is no doubt that the smartphone is becoming ‘good enough’ much of the time; but thanks to mobile phones, more pictures are being taken than ever before,’ said Liz Cutting, imaging analyst at NPD.
‘Consumers who use their mobile phones to take pictures and video were more likely to do so instead of their camera when capturing spontaneous moments, but for important events, single purpose cameras or camcorders are still largely the device of choice.’
Pocket camcorders were down 13 per cent and memory-card camcorders went down eight per cent.