Smartphones are driving point-and-shoot cameras to the brink of extinction | New

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In the struggle for camera supremacy, smartphones have become the big winners of point-and-shoot models.

Sales of new smartphones and their improved cameras totaled around 329 million units in the second quarter of 2021 alone, according to technology research and consulting firm Gartner, Inc.

But digital camera sales, which peaked at 120 million in 2010, fell to around 9 million in 2020, erasing more than four decades of growth. The global pandemic has accelerated the decline, crippling production and sales.

“The bottom line for those who make digital cameras is this: Ironically enough, at a time when we are taking more pictures than ever before, cameras are a dying industry,” wrote David Wyld, consultant in business and university professor, in Better Marketing.

The collapse in digital camera sales is similar to the decline of film cameras, which flourished for a century but began a downward spiral in the late 1990s when digital cameras hit stores.

Today’s lighter smartphones make it easy for owners to take, share, and store photos, and have cameras that capture images as crisp and clear as those taken with virtually obsolete compact cameras.

For example, the new iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 Mini have improved dual cameras with 12-megapixel wide and ultra-wide lenses. The iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max have three new cameras with 12-megapixel wide, ultra-wide and telephoto lenses. New iPhones can now take pictures in night mode.

A camera phone is wedding photographer Amanda Stratford’s favorite choice when she takes most of her children’s photos.

“There is a saying that goes ‘the best camera is the one you have with you’ and I usually steal that statement whenever someone asks me which camera they should be using,” said Stratford, which operates photo studios at Satellite Beach and Tulsa, Oklahoma.

“Having a phone now means having a camera with you at all times. It is a luxury that previous generations did not have. The random moments that we are able to capture throughout our day are pretty amazing. “

Stratford always uses their “real” digital camera for vacations and special events.

“The quality is better, the file size is bigger, and I have control over the exact settings I want to use,” she said. “The images taken on it stand the test of time, while the photos on the phone appear to be a few years old as technology improves. This is not true for all cameras, however. There are plenty of phones out there that do a better job than older compact cameras. “

Stratford has some tips for photographers who prefer smartphones.

“Don’t forget to save your images and print them out,” she says. “If your phone dies tomorrow, how many images will be lost?” “


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