Digital camera sales are in the doldrums, but a leading market
researcher predicts they will rebound.
IDC says with key markets such as Europe, the United States,
and Japan reaching saturation, and the economic downturn as a result of the
global financial crisis, worldwide digital still camera shipment volume
declined for the first time in 2009. However, it adds that stimulated by the economic
rebound and by demand in emerging markets, worldwide shipment volume in 2010 is
expected to return towards 2008 levels.
IDC analyst Chris Chute says there are fewer new customers
out there now, because most households that want a digital camera have
purchased one and don’t need any more just yet. "It's a very mature
market, with three or four cameras per household," Chute told USA Today
while attending the annual Photo Marketing Association International trade show
in Los Angeles.
IDC projects sales of 35 million cameras in 2010, worth $US6.6
billion, down from 2008's 40.4 million cameras, worth $7.9 billion. But prices
are unlikely to go much lower than they are now. "If it did, it would mean
that companies like Canon and Nikon couldn't afford to be in the business,”
Chute told USA Today. “They can't make money at those prices." He also
forecast that printed pictures will decline, in favour of multimedia and video.