03 June 2005

Cell Phones and Digital Cameras

In setting this site up, I've mainly been focused on PDAs and G3 cell phones. However, there are several other devices that constitute intimate computers as well. Digital cameras, now increasingly integrated with cell phones, are one type;
Most camera phones are still at 1 megapixel, and to be worthwhile, said Conway, they need to get to 2 megapixel and add features such as auto focus. But many handset makers are planning to introduce just those features in the near future, if they haven’t already. And that’s something that will leave the low end of the stand-alone digital camera market vulnerable.

“It will take some of the market away,” said Henning. “It will start at the low end first and impact the single use camera market. Certainly by the end of the year more than half of camera phones will be able to produce acceptable 4x6 prints.”...The film camera business is all but disappearing and its last stronghold is the single use camera, one that is getting devoured by camera phones....“Kodak expects sales of film to go down 30 percent this year in the United States.”
I just bought an "old fashioned" digital camera for the wife, and of course I was amazed both at the technical progress that's occurred since I last bought one, and the fall in prices. The speed at which the digital format has supplanted the chemical one is pretty stunning. The camera is massively smaller and much of the volume is occupied by empty space (so the heat can dissipate from individual chips) and by batteries.

Where does this lead? Now we have Treos and Blackberries, in which a single device features a digicam (a video camera that regards in digital format), camera, palm top computer, and cell phone. The next item to be added to the juggling act is, I suppose, GPS.

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