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07-12-2020, 02:13 AM   #61
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QuoteOriginally posted by Serkevan Quote
If smartphones suddenly stopped having cameras, people would still buy them in almost the same number. That's my point.
I do not believe that. The whole driving force behind "social" media is having a platform for narcissm to stand up on the world stage and show around the little "me" to everyone.

And presenting images of the self is key there nowadays. No camera, no images.

07-12-2020, 02:35 AM - 3 Likes   #62
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Personally, I have to have a smart phone in order to run certain apps with my work. It does have a camera and I do use it occasionally. I have been relatively satisfied with the photos from it (I have an iphone 8). They fall apart in low light or high dynamic range situations and obviously it doesn't have multiple lenses available (easily) for it.

I still don't like it on a routine basis because of ergonomics. It is uncomfortable to hold a pack of cards in front of you and touch things on the screen. And if I use it too much as a camera, then I don't have battery life to make phone calls when I need to.

I am not the typical smart phone user on the market right now and I know that. I would say that the camera market is slowing down because some people, who never belonged getting an ILC in the first place, are now using their smartphones exclusively. The other major factor is that people don't need to buy new cameras as often. They are just too good. When I think about what camera brands are trying to get people to buy, it seems as though it is focused on higher frame rates, higher resolution video, and stuff like that. If someone has a D750 or a Sony A73 or even a higher end camera, they just don't need to replace it, unless it breaks, and most cameras should last six or seven years with good TLC.

Simply, cameras are better, but most people don't need "better" than what they have currently and so they aren't buying new cameras.

Last edited by Rondec; 07-12-2020 at 03:14 AM.
07-12-2020, 02:58 AM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote

Simply, cameras are better, but most people don't need "better" than what they have currently and so they aren't buying new cameras.
You explain better than me what I mean.
07-12-2020, 02:59 AM   #64
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QuoteOriginally posted by beholder3 Quote
I do not believe that. The whole driving force behind "social" media is having a platform for narcissm to stand up on the world stage and show around the little "me" to everyone.

And presenting images of the self is key there nowadays. No camera, no images.
Nah, about 15 years ago my entire high school classroom in a rural region of Spain (except for me, I was literally the only one out of 30 kids without phone ) already had cellphones at a time when sending one photo to one person would have cost you something like 0.6 (I really don't remember the cost of an MMS) and "smartphone" was not even invented. Social media was done from the computers.


Current smartphones just make it more convenient IMO.

---------- Post added 07-12-20 at 03:09 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote

Simply, cameras are better, but most people don't need "better" than what they have currently and so they aren't buying new cameras.
And to top it off, a 2006 K10D will probably still be working fine and it will stomp any current smartphone in image quality. A friend of mine showed me his sisters' new Xiaomi whatsitsnumber (4 cameras, 64MP main module) photos and, sure, they are impressive for a phone with such tiny lenses.


I sent back one photo from a 2005 Canon 5D taken with the nifty fifty 50/1.8 - no comparison whatsoever. First he said he would pay more attention to the camera on the phone - since he needs to have a smartphone regardless, might as well - and after a bunch of photos sent by yours truly he might be in the mood to pick up an used ILC, I'm planting the seeds

07-12-2020, 03:50 AM - 2 Likes   #65
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Simply, cameras are better, but most people don't need "better" than what they have currently and so they aren't buying new cameras.
I suspect this same issue is going to affect the smartphone market too. One of the reasons I believe phone manufacturers are pushing their camera functionality so hard is that they've more-or-less exhausted what more they can do with the rest of the phone hardware. Nowadays, a $200 - $300 phone has all the processing power needed for the operating system and most apps (heavy gaming aside), and a perfectly usable (if not especially impressive) camera for documentary snapshots. The >$1,000 phones add even more processing power, better screens and better build quality - but the benefits of those improvements are becoming incremental and, for most users, non-essential. Camera quality is one of very few areas where tangible improvements can be made, and the biggest differentiator between the $300 and $1,000+ phones. That, and - of course - battery life, which is woeful on some phones if you do anything other than leave them on standby. Still, there comes a point with phone cameras where they're "good enough" for most casual users, just as existing ILCs (and those from the last four or five years) are "good enough" for most amateur and even professional photographers. The justification to upgrade due to specs and capabilities is reducing at a fairly alarming rate. The phone manufacturers must increasingly pin their hopes on the "status symbol" and "broken / lost replacement" sales...
07-12-2020, 03:57 AM - 2 Likes   #66
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
I suspect this same issue is going to affect the smartphone market too. One of the reasons I believe phone manufacturers are pushing their camera functionality so hard is that they've more-or-less exhausted what more they can do with the rest of the phone hardware. Nowadays, a $200 - $300 phone has all the processing power needed for the operating system and most apps (heavy gaming aside), and a perfectly usable (if not especially impressive) camera for documentary snapshots. The >$1,000 phones add even more processing power, better screens and better build quality - but the benefits of those improvements are becoming incremental and, for most users, non-essential. Camera quality is one of very few areas where tangible improvements can be made, and the biggest differentiator between the $300 and $1,000+ phones. That, and - of course - battery life, which is woeful on some phones if you do anything other than leave them on standby. Still, there comes a point with phone cameras where they're "good enough" for most casual users, just as existing ILCs (and those from the last four or five years) are "good enough" for most amateur and even professional photographers. The justification to upgrade due to specs and capabilities is reducing at a fairly alarming rate. The phone manufacturers must increasingly pin their hopes on the "status symbol" and "broken / lost replacement" sales...
Phone replacement speed has been dropping for a couple years, which is the reason why manufacturers now use "integrated" batteries. Of course the claim is that "it's more efficient" and "allows for smaller devices", but that's because "it makes it a giant hassle to replace, buy another one" isn't too nice
07-12-2020, 03:58 AM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
I suspect this same issue is going to affect the smartphone market too. One of the reasons I believe phone manufacturers are pushing their camera functionality so hard is that they've more-or-less exhausted what more they can do with the rest of the phone hardware. Nowadays, a $200 - $300 phone has all the processing power needed for the operating system and most apps (heavy gaming aside), and a perfectly usable (if not especially impressive) camera for documentary snapshots. The >$1,000 phones add even more processing power, better screens and better build quality - but the benefits of those improvements are becoming incremental and, for most users, non-essential. Camera quality is one of very few areas where tangible improvements can be made, and the biggest differentiator between the $300 and $1,000+ phones. That, and - of course - battery life, which is woeful on some phones if you do anything other than leave them on standby. Still, there comes a point with phone cameras where they're "good enough" for most casual users, just as existing ILCs (and those from the last four or five years) are "good enough" for most amateur and even professional photographers. The justification to upgrade due to specs and capabilities is reducing at a fairly alarming rate. The phone manufacturers must increasingly pin their hopes on the "status symbol" and "broken / lost replacement" sales...
Batteries and screens are an issue. You may be able to get 3 years out of a smart phone, but if it is going to cost you 150 dollars to replace the battery and fix the cracked screen on your smart phone, you are probably better just replacing the phone.

Unfortunately, a lot of electronics aren't really made to last.
07-12-2020, 04:38 AM - 1 Like   #68
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Batteries and screens are an issue. You may be able to get 3 years out of a smart phone, but if it is going to cost you 150 dollars to replace the battery and fix the cracked screen on your smart phone, you are probably better just replacing the phone.

Unfortunately, a lot of electronics aren't really made to last.
Acknowledged - but I wonder how many folks will continue paying $1,000+ for each replacement, and how often, given that a $300 smartphone with camera is - for most people and practical uses - "good enough", unless it's a status symbol thing...

07-12-2020, 06:08 AM - 4 Likes   #69
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Acknowledged - but I wonder how many folks will continue paying $1,000+ for each replacement, and how often, given that a $300 smartphone with camera is - for most people and practical uses - "good enough", unless it's a status symbol thing...
As long as smartphones are a big part of daily life, there will be people willing to pay outrageous sums for incremental performance.

It's the same with cars. All cars have been "good enough" (able to carry people at legal street speeds) for nearly a century and yet throughout all that time there are people willing to pay 3X to 5X the price of the basic model to get the upgraded model.

(Amusingly, if you look at the economics of designing and producing things like smartphones and cars, you'll find that the rich suckers who buy the high-end model basically subsidize R&D and factory construction for all low-price models bought by sensible consumers. Be glad someone is willing to pay $1000 for a smartphone because they paid for all the chip and factory technology that will go in the basic $300 phone a few years later.)
07-13-2020, 11:03 AM - 1 Like   #70
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
As long as smartphones are a big part of daily life, there will be people willing to pay outrageous sums for incremental performance.

It's the same with cars. All cars have been "good enough" (able to carry people at legal street speeds) for nearly a century and yet throughout all that time there are people willing to pay 3X to 5X the price of the basic model to get the upgraded model.

(Amusingly, if you look at the economics of designing and producing things like smartphones and cars, you'll find that the rich suckers who buy the high-end model basically subsidize R&D and factory construction for all low-price models bought by sensible consumers. Be glad someone is willing to pay $1000 for a smartphone because they paid for all the chip and factory technology that will go in the basic $300 phone a few years later.)
I think most people don't think of it as a thousand dollar outlay of cash. Typically they are given some sort of trade in on their current phone and then are allowed to pay for the new phone over 24 months. So, their payments end up being 30 or 40 dollars a month.

If camera brands let people do that, they might sell more cameras (I know some let you trade in older models, but not usually extending credit).
07-13-2020, 12:17 PM - 1 Like   #71
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I think most people don't think of it as a thousand dollar outlay of cash. Typically they are given some sort of trade in on their current phone and then are allowed to pay for the new phone over 24 months. So, their payments end up being 30 or 40 dollars a month.

If camera brands let people do that, they might sell more cameras (I know some let you trade in older models, but not usually extending credit).
Many or most people don't think of a car as a $40,000 outlay of cash, they go to the dealer and say "what can you get me for $450 a month?" Then the dealer comes up with an eight-year loan at 8% interest at $500 a month and convinces them it's close enough, and off they go with a car that'll be worth $5500 by the time it's paid off. Or they lease the car and have nothing at the end of the contract.


I think you do have an excellent point. Most people are not very financially savvy and will make poor decisions if the short-term implications don't look too bad. I think it's a little unscrupulous, but some camera company could probably do very well if they let people buy cameras and lenses at $50 or $75 a month for three years plus interest. Smartphone adoption would almost certainly have gone much slower if not for the plans that rolled the cost into monthly fees, masking it with data and other charges In 2010 if the new iPhone or Galaxy had cost $1000 people would have laughed. Only after millions upon millions had gotten discounted/monthly rates and got hooked did the companies start shifting to "you have to pay the full retail price" model.
07-13-2020, 12:32 PM - 1 Like   #72
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I think most people don't think of it as a thousand dollar outlay of cash. Typically they are given some sort of trade in on their current phone and then are allowed to pay for the new phone over 24 months. So, their payments end up being 30 or 40 dollars a month.

If camera brands let people do that, they might sell more cameras (I know some let you trade in older models, but not usually extending credit).
Now that I’m working from home I use my iPhone 6+ as a phone eight or ten hours a day. My Work number forwards to my Cell number and I’m using a $150 Sennheiser headset that also works with Skype for Business from my corporate laptop. The headset has a ten hour constant use capability. The point is I’m using my phone as a phone. I just ordered another iPhone6+ as a dedicated work device so my company can monitor client text messages on an app they install. I paid only $345 for the phone but it was an argument to get AT&T to just sell me the phone as another line on my existing contract.

Before WFH my ‘phone’ was mostly an email and text message handler. I’ve never really used the camera part for much of anything besides an easy snapshot that goes in Photos - I don’t have the usual social media accounts at all.

Clients often take a photo of something they want me to look at and text it to me (grinding teeth - that’s ridiculously insecure. They could upload that image in my company’s secure app, but they never get around to downloading the app).

Then again, I use Pentax so I guess I am atypical.

Last edited by monochrome; 07-13-2020 at 08:53 PM.
07-13-2020, 01:46 PM - 1 Like   #73
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Batteries and screens are an issue. You may be able to get 3 years out of a smart phone, but if it is going to cost you 150 dollars to replace the battery and fix the cracked screen on your smart phone, you are probably better just replacing the phone.

Unfortunately, a lot of electronics aren't really made to last.
Plus the sneaky software/firmware updates that slow the smartphone (device) down - some manufactures have claimed these type of updates are to extend the battery life. Maybe. Smart devices are always vulnerable to updates that effectively persuade the user to upgrade before their hardware requires it. Smart can very quickly become dumb after an update.

Also, personally I'm wary about cramming too much function (=dependency) into one device. HiFi was an earlier example where buying separates was wiser than multi-function machines. Smartphone upgrades are driven by weak hardware/battery/bloatware/security issues, etc, without fashion and image "needs" too.

I suppose Ricoh/Canon/Nikon etc could, in theory, issue firmware updates that effectively age our cameras, but it is unlikely.

Many DSLR users probably consciously or unconsciously recognise these issues in a mindset that keeps things simple. Smartphone users who constantly upgrade, probably, are not programmed that way. Different markets for the manufactures to target ...
07-13-2020, 02:44 PM   #74
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QuoteOriginally posted by BarryE Quote
I suppose Ricoh/Canon/Nikon etc could, in theory, issue firmware updates that effectively age our cameras, but it is unlikely.
I'm not so sure about that. As you say, it has been done with other devices, notably by Apple on their phones. "Safety" is another BS claim that has been used to excuse downgrades - my car had a downgrade and lost a function because of that, but thankfully it caused such a furore among users that it was reversed - to some extent.
07-13-2020, 02:54 PM   #75
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QuoteOriginally posted by ThorSanchez Quote
Many or most people don't think of a car as a $40,000 outlay of cash, they go to the dealer and say "what can you get me for $450 a month?" Then the dealer comes up with an eight-year loan at 8% interest at $500 a month and convinces them it's close enough, and off they go with a car that'll be worth $5500 by the time it's paid off. Or they lease the car and have nothing at the end of the contract.


I think you do have an excellent point. Most people are not very financially savvy and will make poor decisions if the short-term implications don't look too bad. I think it's a little unscrupulous, but some camera company could probably do very well if they let people buy cameras and lenses at $50 or $75 a month for three years plus interest. Smartphone adoption would almost certainly have gone much slower if not for the plans that rolled the cost into monthly fees, masking it with data and other charges In 2010 if the new iPhone or Galaxy had cost $1000 people would have laughed. Only after millions upon millions had gotten discounted/monthly rates and got hooked did the companies start shifting to "you have to pay the full retail price" model.
Both B&H and Adorama have plans now that offer zero interest for at least a year on our expensive photo gear. Pay it off before the promo is over. Amazon has one that gives you two years interest-free on some things.

I have no problem with those types of promos and quite willing to take advantage, I always pay them off before the interest kicks in, but you're right that it might encourage some people to buy "over their heads" and the financing company behind 'em is happy to see it happen.
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