CIPA Photo Study

CIPA just published a study that was conducted of digital camera users in Japan last October. I'm going to not comment about the study for the moment, but simply point out that studies like this often drive product development in Japan. 

Okay, I lied. I'm going to comment about one statistic: 37% print photos on a home printer compared to 14% posting them online. No wonder the smartphones are eating the camera makers' lunch. If you design products to survey responses, you actually design them to the bias in your survey (both questions and customer). I'll say it for the nth time: you generate product/business growth by finding and solving previously unsolved user problems, then correctly marketing the solution so that the users know their problem—which they often didn't realize they had—is now solved by buying the right product. 

Moreover, sometimes you accidentally solve the problem without realizing it. Quite a few mirrorless camera sales aren't because the camera is mirrorless, but because the resulting camera (and lenses) are smaller and lighter. The user problems solved by mirrorless are primarily twofold: seeing the image as it will be recorded before pressing the button (e.g. Live View), and smaller and lighter product with the same capability of an equivalent DSLR. 

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