By 9 July 2013 | Categories: news


If you didn’t think that smartphones are having an effect on the sale of compact digital cameras, then Makoto Kimura has news for you. Kimura, president of Nikon Corporation, believes that the compact camera market will shrink 12% in the current financial year.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Kimura noted that point-and-shoot camera sales across the industry dropped about a quarter in April and May from the previous year, also referencing the massive growth in smartphone sales.

This slump in point and shoot sales though, does seem to have made the company think about alternatives in future. “We’ve centralized our ideas around cameras but can change our approach to offer products to that bigger market,” Kimura said, referencing the burgeoning demand for smartphones.

New direction

Although Kimura would not be drawn into admitting that Nikon is developing a smartphone, he did add the following, rather cryptic, statement: “We want to create a product that will change the concept of cameras. It could be a non-camera consumer product.”

What this non-camera product could be is anyone’s guess. According to Kimura, the company’s imaging division is working on new products which should see the light of day in less than five years.

According to Bloomberg, Kimura also mentioned that Nikon may consider expanding into the production of medical equipment, while also not ruling out acquisitions to further growth in the medical side.

To the point

If a week is a long time in politics, five years in technology can seem like aeons. Remember, the first game-changing iPad appeared slightly more than three years ago, while the Micro Four Thirds system was announced less than five years ago. This system, and the rise of the mirrorless camera market, forced Nikon’s (and Canon’s) hand with the 1 range, so it should be interesting to see what these non-camera consumer products are.

In related Nikon news, the Nikon School of Photography is offering some excellent free services to local Nikon owners.

Image of the Nikon Coolpix A, courtesy of Flickr user Vark1.


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