Ricoh remains popular in Japan
It definitely is an unusual camera which fills a niche so that's why it manage to sell well. I don't know any real competitor to it either except for industrial looking ones which maybe cost more than the Theta.
But since it uses two lenses I don't dare to think a whole lot about lens sample variation and the difficulties to get a lens replaced on a usual GRDI or 400G Wide which was under warranty, all due to the substandard quality Control of lenses in the Convar service in Germany, which I've written a whole lot about in other threads and others have had problem with that POS repair service as well...
I can only hope that Criscam in the U.S and other service centers are able to catch bad sample variation much better than Convar in Germany, otherwise people which buy it or other Ricoh cameras like the GR might find some problem if the quality control is equally bad.
I'm not surprised that th GR manage to sell well. especially since it at least initially was priced lower than the Coolpix A. But by now, at least in Sweden, the Coolpix A costs less than the GR after first having cost more. I almost always believed that it only could be a matter of time until Nikon got real about the pricing of it, unless them wanted it to get stuck on the shelves in stores.
But with that said it is only one webstore here in Sweden which have it listed at a lower price than the GR.
It is Schönerr foto which list it at 5990 sek which equals 895 usd. http://www.schonherrsfoto.se/nikon.html
Some other Swedish webstores list it at about 7890 sek which equals 1179 usd, which still is more than for the GR. http://www.prisjakt.nu/produkt.php?p=1703368
Ricoh GR is currently listed at 6490 sek which equals 969 usd http://www.prisjakt.nu/produkt.php?p=1835056
Schönerr foto have a not so good reputation on Prisjakt.se due to that 1/4 users gave it quite a bad rated reputation. So that made me curious to try to get a better view of what their reputation is like.
Found a thread about it which I've run through Google translate http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=sv&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=sv&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.fotosidan.se%2Fforum%2Fshowthread.php%3Ft%3D12222%26highlight%3Dsch%25F6nerrs
I'm not overly interested to buy a Coolpix A or a GR. But if I was about to choose one of them it would probably be the GR despite the the issues with dust so far which I still not have read about regarding the A yet. I find it unlikely that Nikon is going to add useful features through firmware updates. There may be a firmware update sooner or later to speed up the AF at the best that we might expect.
Nikon have not often added new functions to their higher end Dslrs so I doubt that it would be any different with Coolpix A.