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Print 29 comment(s) - last by RU482.. on Feb 10 at 12:43 PM

Kodak also giving up on photo frames and pocket video recorders

It's no secret that photography company Kodak has been down on its luck in recent years. The company, which was once a pioneer in digital photography, found itself unable to compete with more agile competitors like Nikon and Canon. Even more telling is with the rise of smartphones with increasingly better picture/video-capturing capabilities, the market for dedicated point-and-shoot cameras has been steadily eroding; a point that Sony has already conceded.
 
Given that Kodak digital cameras typically couldn't hold a candle to competition from Nikon, Canon, and Sony, it should come as no surprise that following the company's announcement last month that it was filing for bankruptcy that the next step would be to shutter its digital camera business.
 
Digital cameras, however, aren't the only casualties -- Kodak will also discontinue pocket video cameras and digital photo frames. These product lines will be phased out during the first half of 2012.
 
“For some time, Kodak’s strategy has been to improve margins in the capture device business by narrowing our participation in terms of product portfolio, geographies and retail outlets. Today’s announcement is the logical extension of that process, given our analysis of the industry trends,” said Pradeep Jotwani, President, Consumer Businesses, and Kodak Chief Marketing Officer.  
 
Kodak will now focus its energies on its more profitable areas including retail photo printing, desktop inkjet printing, its Kodak Gallery online photo service, and traditional film capture business.

Source: Kodak



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RE: Never inovated
By StevoLincolnite on 2/9/2012 12:48:31 PM , Rating: 2
Camera sales held steady for years, then you had the massive digital camera boom, then the camera market became saturated, then you had convergance of multiple products like the phone and camera... No where else to go but south, unless you diversify.

If Kodak was a heavy producer of camera sensors for instance, they would probably be sitting fine as companies try and cram a camera into every product.
Or if they released a "Kodak" phone with a stellar camera, would have loved to have seen that.


RE: Never inovated
By KC7SWH on 2/9/2012 1:08:08 PM , Rating: 2
Not only did the market (digital point and shoot) become saturated but Canon (I'm sure there were others as well) was beating Kodak not only on price but on picture quality as well. So they priced themselves out of the market.


RE: Never inovated
By fic2 on 2/9/2012 1:52:26 PM , Rating: 2
From my experience Kodak cameras were crap. I bought two Kodak digital for relatives - they both broke within a year.
On the other hand I have a Canon SD600 that is so old it can't take SD cards larger than 2G. It sill takes great pictures and I take it everywhere including snowboarding. I have since given a couple of Canons as gifts and the receivers love them.


RE: Never inovated
By JediJeb on 2/9/2012 6:38:28 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
so old it can't take SD cards larger than 2G


lol I like how that is considered old. My first digital camera was a Kodak which at the time was the best on the market picture quality wise. It had a 3.1 Megapixel sensor and I think 4x optical zoom and the memory card that came with it was a whopping 64MB which I quickly upgraded to a 256MB one. I used that camera for nearly 10 years until I left it in the back of my truck about a year ago and a sudden rain storm killed it :( It always performed flawlessly. But I heard that newer models that were crammed with more features were not as reliable.

I went last week to start looking for a new DSLR and was sad to see that one of my favorite camera makers, Minolta, was no longer in business. I used to be very into photography but with so much work have been out of the loop for several years, have to catch up on everything again, but I am hoping that digital is now near the quality of film for doing large landscape photos and astrophotography.


RE: Never inovated
By epobirs on 2/9/2012 10:58:46 PM , Rating: 2
I had an early Olympus that used the unfortunately named Smart Media cards. When the first 8 MB cards came out I bought in anticipation for a trip and it killed the camera. Turned out there was a change in the spec and the Olympus firmware took it so badly the camera was bricked and had to be factory repaired.


RE: Never inovated
By Natch on 2/10/2012 11:31:29 AM , Rating: 2
Fault of the manufacturer, or the user?

I have a 5MP Kodak camera that's 6-7 years old (same SD card limitation as yours), that still functions as well as the day I pulled it out of the box.

I have a pocket compact Kodak, 10MP model that I bought 3 years ago, that shoots 720P video, and is my day to day camera.

IMHO, Kodak made good, inexpensive cameras, and made them well.


RE: Never inovated
By maven81 on 2/9/2012 1:38:44 PM , Rating: 1
I would argue that diversification is what got them into this predicament. Seems to me that they couldn't decide whether they want to be a top notch imaging company or a consumer electronics company. Why would they get into digital photo frames in the first place? I'm pretty sure they didn't produce the LCDs, so they were basically repackaging someone else's products. I know I've also seen at least one cheapie camera that was clearly a generic knockoff with a kodak sticker on it.
They should be ashamed of themselves. They had decades of top notch optics and imaging experience. They've produced some amazing spysat optics that have only recently gotten declassified. But instead of focussing on their strong points they've chosen to market crappy "mee too" products. They definitely could have a clue from a company like Carl Zeiss, who produce lenses for several camera phones.


RE: Never inovated
By mjrichar on 2/9/2012 1:49:35 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, Kodak Image Sensor Solutions made some of the best CCDs available. Their image sensors are for high-end cameras, though, not basic photography. Think medical imaging, astronomy, semiconductor wafer inspection, etc. For some very strange reason Kodak recently spun that group off as TrueSense, which was one of the very few profitable and innovative groups they had left.


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