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Canon has Wi-Fi designs on its cheapest model

Last updated on: June 8, 2013 08:24 IST

Canon has Wi-Fi designs on its cheapest model

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Digbijay Mishra in Kolkata

Entry-level compact cameras, also referred to as point-and- shoot cameras, have been facing the brunt of rising smartphone sales. Now, in a bid to provide a much-needed boost to the compact segment, Canon India is in the process of providing its cheapest camera model with Wi-Fi.

Wi-Fi access, ubiquitous in laptops and handheld devices, have been enabling amateur photographers to share their photographs instantly on social networking sites. Camera manufacturers don't want to miss out on the trend.

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Image: Cameras from Canon's compact IXY series are displayed at the company's showroom in Tokyo.
Photographs: Toru Hanai/Reuters

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Canon India CEO & President, Kazutada Kobayashi says that this was the need of the hour in order to bring about a spurt in sales in the compact segment, estimated to be 2.5 million units and around Rs 2,000 crore (Rs 20 billion).

"This market will shrink by another 20-25 per cent this year, and as a consequence, our sales will also be affected. So, we are expecting to bring in Wi-Fi in our cheapest cameras next year. We have to lift the values that are being provided in the product," says Kobayashi.

Canon's cheapest point-and-shoot camera is the PowerShot 2500 at Rs 5,995, which is not Wi-Fi-enabled.

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Image: A woman walks on an advertisement for Canon digital cameras at an electronics retail store in Tokyo.
Photographs: Toru Hanai/Reuters

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Canon has Wi-Fi designs on its cheapest model

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At present, Canon's entry-level Wi-Fi-enabled camera is the PowerShot A3500 at almost Rs 10,000. Canon's move can be a game-changer, as most other camera players are offering Wi-Fi-enabled cameras at prices from Rs 10,000 upwards.

Samsung with its Galaxy Camera and Nikon are others offering Wi-Fi in cameras. Earlier in 2013, the Indian camera market witnessed the entry of the Samsung Galaxy Camera.

According to Kobayashi, the other reason for concern in the point-and-shoot segment is the healthy growth in DSLR (digital single reflex) camera sales. Around 300,000 DSLR units were sold last year, growing at 25 per cent per year.

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Image: Canon cameras with lenses in Cologne, Germany.
Photographs: Ina Fassbender/Reuters

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Canon has Wi-Fi designs on its cheapest model

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The smartphone market is estimated to be around 18 million handsets, growing at more than 50 per cent a year. Speaking about the overall business of the company, Kobayashi says the consumer business has seen fluctuations, while the B2B business was showing a constant growth.

"Our B2B segment is growing at 11-13 per cent, which is not too fast but it is constant for us," he adds.

The company is aiming to clock a top-line growth of 15 per cent in the current year. It had witnessed a top-line of Rs 1,850 crore (Rs 18.50 billion) last year.

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Image: Visitors try out the latest equipment in Cologne, Germany.
Photographs: Ina Fassbender/Reuters
Tags: B2B , Kobayashi , Canon

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Canon India'a B2B business primarily focuses on commercial printing solutions. It created a new segment for the same in January this year. Apart from printing machines, Canon sells complete solutions for printing as per its client's requirements.

"This business has always been very stable in character and we hope to continue that," says Kobayashi. The company which has also started selling movie cameras, Cinema EOS, is aiming to sell 200 such units this year.

Going forward, Kobayashi says one of his ambitions is to see the photo-printing market grow in India. "It is not at all popular in the India, so I would want to explore that," he concludes.


Image: A model presents Canon S110 in Cologne, Germany.
Photographs: Ina Fassbender/Reuters

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