Life after Photokina: Samsung’s Galaxy Camera.

News from Photokina are like Fall leaves. They are everywhere and it is hard to know where to start taking care of them. Because of that, we are doing two things: a few blog posts highlighting the most interesting and influential products, and a paid Google Hangout on Monday October 15 at 1pm EST, where we will discuss what we saw and learned, and how it will affect your business in 2013.

Photokina is a huge show. There are nine giant exhibition halls and most of them are two stories high. Every corner of these buildings is filled with everything having to do with the photo industry.  Canon, Leica, Nikon, and Sony introduced full-frame 35mm-sized sensor cameras, ranging from compact (Sony) to low-cost DSLRs (Canon, Nikon) to high-end pro rangefinders (Leica). Almost everybody claimed significant reductions in shutter lag and focusing speed, and many manufacturers added some form of Wi-Fi connectivity. If you think the iPhone 5 blurs the lines between cameras and smartphones you haven’t seen Samsung’s Galaxy Camera, by far the most original product we saw at Photokina.

As we saw before with Nikon’s Coolpix S800c, Android is rapidly becoming the OS of choice for smart phones.



Some (bad) news about Hard Drives.

The Hard Drive world has seen a lot of action lately.

When inventory levels plummeted 90 percent in less than a week after the Thailand flood in October, the top-selling hard drives on and went up anywhere from 50 up to an absurd 150 percent. Over the past few weeks, Hard Drive prices are finally starting to drop, and the trend should continue throughout the year until supply meets demand sometime around Q3 2012. AppleInsider did a fascinating analysis on this topic by extrapolating MacBook Pro pricing.

Apple Laptop

On related news, Apple is apparently in the process of acquiring Anobit, which makes chips that greatly increase the performance of flash memory on devices like the iPhone 4S.

Seagate Technology completed the acquisition of the hard disk drive business of Samsung Electronics for $1.4 billion in stock and cash. The deal was approved in Australia, China, and the E.U.

In 2010, HDD shipments from both Seagate and Samsung represented 40 percent of the HDD market. Western Digital and Hitachi Global Storage Technologies still held the number one position with a 50 percent share. Western Digital intends to buy Hitachi Global Storage Technologies for $4.3 billion in cash and stock and the acquisition is expected to be finalized by March.

The mergers are not good for photographers, filmmakers, and any creative relying on desktop hard drives. With Western Digital’s acquisition of Hitachi, and Seagate’s acquisition of Samsung’s segment, the two companies will control approximately 90% of the market.