Camera sales are falling and it's partially our fault.

Started Aug 2, 2013 | Discussions thread
mosswings Veteran Member • Posts: 8,219
Re: Camera sales are falling and it's partially our fault.
4

meland wrote:

No doubt many of you have read the article - http://www.dpreview.com/news/2013/08/01/camera-shipments-2013-CIPA

Depressing reading! Of course there may be many reasons for this including the often repeated impact of smartphones and in many regions a less than buoyant economy but perhaps one of the major reasons is just us.

By us I mean the typical 'enthusiast' that lurks around forums such as these.

Given the nit picking, jargon using, back biting, photographer jacket wearing, brand defending, DxO data repeating, 100% viewing, DR criticising, armchair experts in marketing, trust me I'm an expert-ing, cat and duck photographing, bokeh examining .................. and general willy waving - why would most newcomers, especially younger people, have the slightest interest in becoming part of that rather sad image?

+1 to all those who commented that photography fora have nothing to do with the collapse of the photo industry.

The simple reason is demographics.  For the most part millennials and those younger have completely different priorities and interests than the boomer and gen X cohort that drove camera sales in years past. It has been consistently true for generations that the needs of most are met by whatever "brownie" camera equivalent has been current.  In today's market, that is the smartphone, providing far more features and easy connectivity than any conventional camera user could ever dream of.

Cameras today function as a part of the instant communication network.  Smartphones serve that purpose with far greater aptitude than an conventional camera, which was not designed to make communication easy.  Consider the pain that even a wifi-enabled camera user has to go through to simply publish a picture.  It's torturous compared to the click-click-click of a smartphone linked to Facebook or whatever.  The DSLR user is a hair-shirted monk by comparison (and I shoot mostly DSLRs, so no flames on that opinion, please).

Millennials and younger have other things to spend their time and money on than fussy mechanical objects. You may have noticed that they are delaying or reprioritizing all sorts of things - relationships, home ownership, car ownership, etc.  Perhaps when they enter family-raising phase of life they may turn to better cameras, but those devices won't be traditionally configured in the main.

Meanwhile, camera manufacturers continue to stir the pot that is aging away with retro designs and features targeted towards the 50-somethings, the traditional age demographic for "serious" cameras and the only demographic with sufficient disposable income to afford precision photographic equipment. That cohort is now far less able to do so, and many (like Barnaby in his editorial) have realized that it doesn't take such expenditure or weight-lifting to get spectacular performance.

We're in the middle of an extinction event here, folks.  Somewhere out there are tiny little mammals ready to take over from the rapidly-falling dinosaurs.

 mosswings's gear list:mosswings's gear list
Olympus XZ-1 Olympus Stylus 1 Nikon D90 Nikon D7100 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +5 more
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