What the New Canon Releases Mean, Part 2

Canon’s Point and Shoot Cameras
In the point and shoot digital area, Canon have many more competitors
than in dSLRs. Many of these are highly effective companies producing
great products.

The latest releases from Canon build on an already strong range. The
Elph (IXUS) models have always been a favorite and the new releases
expand the offerings in this range for more pixels and also more
convenience with the dock of the lower-end model. In the new A-series
releases Canon has brought bigger camera features down to a smaller
package size, with the two A 600 series models, in particular, bringing
serious photographic control to a small form factor. Meanwhile the S80
brings 8Mpixel capability to an excellent package. All these releases
strengthen Canon’s position.

However Canon does not seem quite so dominant in this market. Whilst
they have been in the number one slot in the US market for some time,
many of their competitors have either equally strong product or strong
niche products. Companies like Pentax, Olympus and Casio, to pick just
three, offer great products that are keeping Canon on their toes.

Mobile or cell phones with cameras are fast dominating the bottom of
the digital point and shoot market. With 2Mpixel now readily available
and up to 5Mpixel on the way or already available in some markets, we
can expect a lot of the lower-end camera action to head the phone way.
Afterall, once they have autofocus, optical zoom and high enough
resolution, why carry two things for general purposes, a camera and a
phone? My new cell phone is the Sony Ericsson K750i and a full review
on this will be going up soon here. Sure it is only 2Mpixel and has no
optical zoom. But it is awefully impressive for many purposes and it
does at least focus properly.

Because people do not have a big investment in accessories and lenses
in this market segment, customers tend to be more willing to jump
brands on an upgrade, and the upgrade market is occupying a bigger
slice of digital camera sales each year as people outgrow their first,
or sometimes second, digital camera. Canon has great product and has
all the right ingredients to maintain and indeed grow their market
share in this segment. It just might start to shrink in the future as
camera phones bite.

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