Apple Digital Camera?

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Do you think that apple should make digital cameras.



iPod and iTunes!



iCapture and iPhoto?
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 76
    johnqjohnq Posts: 2,763member
    iThink iT's called iSight?



    iSight is not going to me merely an iChat camera.



    When the color screened, aluminum iPod DVs ship, the iSight will snap on the back of the iPod DV.



    iPod DV will ship in 20, 40 and 60 GB versions and allow for wireless video chat, saving videos to disk, and still pictures.



    Ok, maybe not.



    Although I'd like Apple to make everything I use, including PDA and cellphone, etc., I also have no problem with Apple "merely" providing compatability and connectivity to such devices.



    There's a fine line between being diversified/hedging one's bets and being too spread out. Somehow Sony does it and the results are usually spectacular (if only they could be allowed to also make Macs). But I can't put Apple in that league of successful diversification.



    Apple making a camera is less outlandish than say, iPod, but they'd have to make it as cutting edge as the iPod is in order to compete amongst the bazillion other cameras.
  • Reply 2 of 76
    paulpaul Posts: 5,278member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by cwedl

    Do you think that apple should make digital cameras.



    no, my digital Elph works great...



    no need for apple to make a camera... no advantage...
  • Reply 3 of 76
    eugeneeugene Posts: 8,254member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by johnq

    iThink iT's called iSight?



    iSight is not going to me merely an iChat camera.



    When the color screened, aluminum iPod DVs ship, the iSight will snap on the back of the iPod DV.



    iPod DV will ship in 20, 40 and 60 GB versions and allow for wireless video chat, saving videos to disk, and still pictures.



    Ok, maybe not.




    The iSight has a max resoultion of 640x480, can't zoom, uses a tiny CCD, and tiny optics...no thanks.



    And like I'm going to spend $400 and $200 on an iPod AV and iSight 2 just to get a still camera...
  • Reply 4 of 76
    cliveclive Posts: 720member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by cwedl

    Do you think that apple should make digital cameras.



    Apple abandoned the digital camera market 6-7 years ago, I think it's unlikely that they will re-enter given that this sector is pretty much "commoditised" and their competitors will effectively be all the big camera manufacturers.



    Given this lead, I predict that the iPod will suffer the same fate. As this market becomes cheaper and also commoditised Apple will be forced to compete with the likes of Sony, Sharp etc. Look to future versions of iTunes synching with any number of third-party devices in the same way that iPhoto deals with lots of camera manufacturer's devices.
  • Reply 5 of 76
    To know which is the next iDevice we need to fill in the blank.



    "Support for __(insert device name here)__ on MacOS X is really bad."



    So far we have a great MP3 player, popular phones sync with iSync, we have a decent webcam now, iPhoto supports a lot of cameras...



    I'm not sure if a digital camera is next. I sort of hope it is, but maybe Apple's thinking different.



    Deep inside I still hope for an iNewton. Steve tried to buy Palm, didn't he?
  • Reply 6 of 76
    neutrino23neutrino23 Posts: 1,517member
    I think it is really unlikely Apple will return to the digital camera market. They might possibly make a prototype to show off some of the technologies that work well with OS X as a way to encourage other manufacturers to better support OS X.



    Apple could do a good job of the computer interface part and support for digital pictures. They don't have the technology for making a really excellent camera.



    Regarding iPod, Apple may have enough patents to protect that product for a while. If they can lower the price some and quickly bring out an iTunes for windows then iPods may remain the dominant format.



    An interesting idea would be for Apple to license basic iPod technology (scroll wheel, software to interface to iTunes) to other manufacturers like Sony, Panasonic, etc. They lose profit by not selling a machine. They gain some license fees. They gain a lot by having more players out there that sync to iTMS.
  • Reply 7 of 76
    paulpaul Posts: 5,278member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Clive

    Look to future versions of iTunes synching with any number of third-party devices in the same way that iPhoto deals with lots of camera manufacturer's devices.



    ummm iTunes works with loads of mp3 players, not just the iPod... it just so happens that the iPod is the most popular one out there...



    apple will NOT abandon the iPod... infact I'd go so far in saying that apple would sooner abandon their computer business (as in making computer hardware) before they abandon the iPod...
  • Reply 8 of 76
    chris cuillachris cuilla Posts: 4,825member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Clive

    Apple abandoned the digital camera market 6-7 years ago, I think it's unlikely that they will re-enter given that this sector is pretty much "commoditised" and their competitors will effectively be all the big camera manufacturers.



    Personal computers are "commodities" (not).



    Digital music players are "commodities" (not).







    Quote:

    Given this lead, I predict that the iPod will suffer the same fate. As this market becomes cheaper and also commoditised Apple will be forced to compete with the likes of Sony, Sharp etc.



    They already do compete with these companies.
  • Reply 9 of 76
    cliveclive Posts: 720member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

    Personal computers are "commodities" (not).



    I'm pretty certain they are - Apple differentiates here with the OS, not really the hardware.



    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

    Digital music players are "commodities" (not).



    Nearly right, "not yet". Within a couple of years they will be as common as walkman-style cassette players or minidiscs.



    Quote:

    Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

    They already do compete with these companies.



    In an oblique way, in breaking ground in a relatively expensive market. Once these devices become more mainstream then Apple will no longer be able to differentiate with features, because everyone will have the same, or better, and they won't be able to compete on price because they don't have the same economies of scale as the Sonys/Sharps of the world.



    These are the same reasons Apple no longer makes a digital camera, hasn't re-entered the PDA market and doesn't make a mobile phone.
  • Reply 10 of 76
    paulpaul Posts: 5,278member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Clive

    and they won't be able to compete on price because they don't have the same economies of scale as the Sonys/Sharps of the world.



    first of all, yes they do... they have MORE then 50% of the mp3 player market... that means both flash, CD, AND HD based devices...



    plus this is where the iTMS comes in.... ONLY THE IPOD WILL WORK WITH THESE DOWNLOADED TUNES... (well, and discmen)...



    as soon as iTMS(PC) comes out you will see an even larger increase in iPod sales... the momentum is by no means slowing...
  • Reply 11 of 76
    murkmurk Posts: 935member
    They shouldn't bother unless they can bring something new to the market. That something should be a hybrid high quality video/still camera built around Foveon and Apple's software suite.
  • Reply 12 of 76
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Clive

    I'm pretty certain they are - Apple differentiates here with the OS, not really the hardware.







    Nearly right, "not yet". Within a couple of years they will be as common as walkman-style cassette players or minidiscs.



    - and they won't be able to compete on price because they don't have the same economies of scale as the Sonys/Sharps of the world.



    These are the same reasons Apple no longer makes a digital camera, hasn't re-entered the PDA market and doesn't make a mobile phone.




    While some of what you say might play a role, Apple simply cannot and SHOULD not become a supermarket for technology items. They would be nuts to do cameras and phones, since these items are well done by others. Apple just needs to provide connectvity. This is not the case with iChat/iSight as Apple needs to be very influential in this emerging market and the software needs to be either embedded in the OS or darn close to it. Apple, too could make cheap stuff, possibly at price points that Sharp/Sony and Samsung might offer--but they won't and in the end that is fine. They simply don't have to make everything we use with our computers and I don't want to see anything with an Apple moniker on it that looks like so much of the drivel one sees eveerywhere in our computer stores.
  • Reply 13 of 76
    ensign pulverensign pulver Posts: 1,193member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by murk

    They shouldn't bother unless they can bring something new to the market. That something should be a hybrid high quality video/still camera built around Foveon and Apple's software suite.



    Murk gets it. Suprisingly few others in this forum do.



    Every few months an Apple camera thread pops up and I make the following argument. Here I go again:



    Home photography is a universal market. EVERYBODY loves pictures and movies. Yes, digital cameras are mainstream, even commoditized, but they still aren't mandatory possesions like cell phones because they are still usually more trouble than they are worth. Most people need a really good reason to take pictures (let alone video). There's still a phsycological barrier to digital photography because the hardware is still a pain. iPhoto makes it a lot better, but the cameras themselves suck, the exact same way all the MP3 players sucked before the iPod. The market is crying out for a solution and this is just what Apple does best: spend some time surveying the market, take all the good, throw out the bad, and put it all in one little drool-worthy box that makes you smack your forehead in that wonderful, somebody-finally-figured-it-out way.



    Apple's next DLD will be a camera, called iCam. (The name iSight was used for the webcam since it is for viewing not archiving.) It will be a huge hit in the exact same way as the iPod, and for the exact same reasons. The iPod took three seperate devices (MP3player, portable FireWire hard drive and PDA) and combined them into one little box without compromising any functionality. (I know the PDA functions are limited, but 90% of people only use their PDAs for contact and schedule management). Now instead of spending $500-$600 on three seperate boxes you have to juggle and keep track of, you spend $300-$500 on one little box with better functionality than the multiple dedicated devices it replaces.



    Consumer digital cameras currently suffer from the same fragmention. You have to spend $200-$500 on a still camera and then $400-$1000 on a DV camcorder. Yes, many still cameras shoot video and many camcorders shoot stills, but they all suck at it. They take one kind of image well and the other kind terribly.



    This leads to the current problem for consumers. Dad wants to chronicle little Timmy's soccer games, but he has to choose between good stills and crappy video or good video and crappy stills. Even if he drops $1K+ on both kinds of cameras, he still has to decide which one to use at any given time. Is this week's game "video worthy" or are stills good enough? Of course what ends up happening is Dad takes both cameras to the game and ends up taking a header into the Gatorade as he juggles a still camera in one hand and a camcorder in the other.



    Then when he gets home he gets to manage two transfer sessions with two different kinds of cables and charge two kinds of external or removeable batteries.



    Apple can do for consumer photography and videography what no one else can. The combination of Foveon tech, a 40-60GB Toshiba drive and MPEG-4 will create a HD based hybrid camera/camcorder that does everything in one box with no compromise. The stills and the video both look great.



    So, Dad archives the soccer game, comes home, plugs his iCam into his Mac via FireWire and all the stills go to iPhoto and all the video to iMovie. No tapes to swap out, label and store, and no external batteries to recharge. It costs less than buying two dedicated cameras and is 100 times easier to use.





    OK, let me anticipate the objections.



    1. HD based DV capture will be substandard. If you want good DV you have to use a traditional tape based camcorder.



    This may or may not end up being true. Even if it does, so what? The MPEG-4 stuff will be more than adequate for 99% of consumers. It's just like the MP3 format. You give up a little quality in return for massive convenience.



    2. I like my DV tapes. I can bring extras with me for more storage and they double as a backup of my video. A HD based camera won't offer enough recording time for video.



    This is true. Those little $8 DV tapes are a marvel and I'm a fan of them. 99% of consumers however, won't care. All they want is ease of use. Give them 60-90 minutes of raw video footage along with a couple hundred high rez stills, all in one sealed box and they'll be thrilled. Most people don't shoot more than that on one outing anyway.



    3. A HD based consumer hybrid camera is a toy. I want a "real" camera.



    You are a geek. The iCam is not for you. Don't buy one.
  • Reply 14 of 76
    aquaticaquatic Posts: 5,602member
    Where are consumer Foveons, like a Nikon Coolpix X3? Are they going to trickle down eventually?
  • Reply 15 of 76
    aquaticaquatic Posts: 5,602member
    No. Get a Nikon Coolpix if you want a good camera.



    Quote:

    economies of scale



    hahahahahahaha. This is one thing we don't need to worry about. I mean if DELL sells them...



    And the iPod keeps getting more like a PDA. We just need input and a color screen, and the ability to play back movies, either on the internal screen and/or through FireWire. And a mic and/or line in. That's it and that's probably mostly coming on the next rev (I was sorely disappointed the new ones didn't have a mic or line in.) Apple knows more about PDAs then anyone else, and more about MP3 players too apparently. My iPod is the best thing I ever bought. The idea of idea of doing more with an iPod and morphing it into a PDA is a "Good Thing?"
  • Reply 16 of 76
    murkmurk Posts: 935member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Aquatic

    Where are consumer Foveons, like a Nikon Coolpix X3? Are they going to trickle down eventually?



    I once read an interview with the head of Foveon. He said the future of the chip was in hybrid still/video cameras for consumers. Sorry I don't have a link to the quote.
  • Reply 17 of 76
    matsumatsu Posts: 6,558member
    Hmmm... not that I think Apple is going to make a camera, but Foveon is interesting. It is sorta consumerish already, the SD9 being cheaper than other D-SLR's.



    A interesting note about the technology. Since having had time to get a thorough explanation of sensors hehe. The Foveon put an X3 moniker on their chip, 3.5MP X3. You could look at it as 10.5M sensors. That's like a Canon full frame sensor. The mosaic in a bayer, you might argue, makes better use of it's sensors, because it delivers more resolution out of it's 10M+ sensors. However, you have to deal with BIG image files to get that detail (10MP vs 3.5). The Foveon seems to have the possibility to deliver great detail with much smaller image files. Interesting. Storage costs, and so do powerful computers and image manipulation programs, the small file (with big res/detail) seems almost more ideally suited to consumers than pros, for while the 10M sensors in the Foveon DO NOT return the same resolution as the 10MP in the Canon, they do it cheaper and they DO pack more detail per file size than any other array so far.
  • Reply 18 of 76
    cliveclive Posts: 720member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by rjwill246

    While some of what you say might play a role, Apple simply cannot and SHOULD not become a supermarket for technology items.



    Well that's exactly what I'm saying. They won't re-enter the digital camera market because that's commoditised, they won't enter PDA/phone market becaue it's commoditised, they entered the digital music player market because it was new and exciting, it'll soon also become commoditised and they will exit that market.



    I agree with what you wrote, Apple should be the company to link all these things up, not make them.
  • Reply 19 of 76
    cliveclive Posts: 720member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Ensign Pulver

    Home photography is a universal market. EVERYBODY loves pictures and movies. Yes, digital cameras are mainstream, even commoditized, but they still aren't mandatory possesions like cell phones because they are still usually more trouble than they are worth...



    This is a false premise to start off with, digital cameras are cheap, easy to use and easy to get your files from. All the manufacturers offer "iPhoto" style software to catalogue your images with, and for those that want more there's iPhoto or commercial applications.



    Apple simply does not have a unique proposition to enter this market.
  • Reply 20 of 76
    quickquick Posts: 227member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Ensign Pulver

    Murk gets it. Suprisingly few others in this forum do.



    You must be one of them?
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