This week's Photography Marketing Association show in New Orleans may be remembered as the turning point in widespread acceptance of digital photography, analysts say, because of the introduction of both low-cost cameras, imaginative products, and input from companies new to the market.
Panasonic introduced a hybrid camcorder/digital camera line that combines traditional camcorder functions with digital still-photography capabilities.
According to market research analyst firm ARS, which issued a report today on the digital cameras introduced at the show, the new cameras offer VGA resolution and feature audio and motion sensors that turn the camera on when it senses motion or sound. They will ship in May and cost from $999 to $1,099.
Panasonic also launched a new promotion for its PV-DC1080 digital camera. The company now will include a coupon toward the price of scanning traditional photographs using the Kodak Picture Network.
Mustek announced that it has begun shipping its VDC-200, a megapixel camera that includes a 1.8-inch color LCD screen. Mustek said the camera will be bundled with a scanner for $399 in April. According to ARS, this is the first promotion of its kind, where a scanner and a camera come together.
Casio introduced the QV-770, a less expensive version of its existing QV-700 digital camera. According to ARS, although the QV-770 lacks the higher photo storage capacity of its counterpart, it offers other features that consumers will find attractive: infrared support, panorama capture and viewing, and the technology to turn still digital images into a QuickTime or AVI movie clip. The new model, available in the spring, will sell for $399--$100 less than the QV-700, which is priced at retail locations for about $560.
Finally, JVC launched its first digital camera, the GC-S1, featuring VGA resolution, zoom, and memory capacity of up to 100 images. The GC-S1 is due to ship in the spring for $699.