There are millions of new digital camera owners looking for the easiest, quickest, most efficient, most cost effective, and most convenient way to get prints and enlargements. The solutions, however, vary by consumer. For some, it may be to order online for in-store pickup. For others, it may be to use a kiosk to place an order for immediate printing at the kiosk, for printing by the minilab while the consumer shops, or for economical off-site processing.
Retailers need to provide as many of these options as possible in a consumer friendly and easy to use setting and to work with their suppliers to promote these services. Fujifilm's market leading Frontier lab systems, new GetPix kiosks and order terminals, Fujicolor Processing wholesale print services, software solutions from Fujifilm e-Systems, and marketing and sales staffs can provide the tools and marketing support retailers need.
Retailers should also offer and promote products such as greeting cards, calendars, frames, and CDs, as well as accessories: batteries, chargers, memory cards, etc.
The sale of a digital camera is just the beginning, and retailers and minilabs should capitalize on the rapidly growing print and accessory sale opportunities and promote their services aggressively. At Fujifilm, we believe we are in the best position to work with retailers and minilabs to build their businesses in the digital age.
More Options, More Opportunities
Joe Murphy, Regional Sales Manager, GE/SANYO
Photo dealers and minilab owners must educate the consumer on the products they offer. Today's products allow consumers to do more then ever. With the increase in options comes an opportunity to offer consumers more accessories for these products.
Moving into 2006, the increase in battery capacities will continue; as will the availability of dedicated camera battery packs.
The industry—manufacturers and retailers—need to help consumers understand what they have purchased and how to use it. Today's products are combining features from one category, and incorporating them into another. These products offer so many options that consumers often don't realize everything that a given product can do—unless they are educated by a knowledgeable dealer.
Making Digital Easier For Photographers
Jack Showalter, President, Hasselblad USA Inc.
What a year it has been at Hasselblad USA. Following our merger with Imacon in August 2004 we have transformed into a true digital as well as film based photography company.
At photokina 2004, we debuted our first two new digital products: the medium format, fully integrated Hasselblad H1D digital camera, and the Hasselblad V96C digital back designed specifically for our V-System cameras. Both were embraced enthusiastically by photographers wanting more than 35mm digital could offer. The demand for our Flextight scanners also remains very strong among film shooters who prefer a 'hybrid' digital workflow.
Moving forward, new medium format CCD sensors announced by Kodak and others are exciting, as the pixel count grows. Hasselblad will certainly utilize these denser sensors in future products, but we also know that photography is more than a pixel game. We feel photographers also want the ability to move easily between the film and digital worlds; simpler, more intuitive workflows; the ability to work with industry standard file formats; faster frame rates; shoot at higher ISO's; and faster image processing time. In late 2005 and 2006, photographers will certainly see many of their wishes granted.
Consumer Access To Photos Anytime, Anywhere
Larry Lesley, Senior VP, Digital Photography & Entertainment, HP's Imaging & Printing Group
One of the hot topics of the past year has focused around where consumers would chose to print their digital photos—at home, online, or at retail. HP stated then, and still believes today, that most consumers will chose to utilize a mix of all three options.
While a year later we continue to find that the majority of prints are still produced at home, we recognize that retail photofinishing is quickly ramping up and by 2008 will produce nearly just as many prints as those printed in the home, representing a huge opportunity for many of us in this industry. Additionally, we're seeing a growing opportunity in the online photo service space—providing customers the ability to order online and to pick up prints at a local retailer in as little as an hour.
Tremendous progress in the digital photography market continues at a rapid pace as we work towards removing barriers that still exist—even perceived barriers—in order to provide consumers with a rich and rewarding end-to-end digital photography experience. We continue to see significant improvements in simplicity, with new ease-of-use features on cameras and portable photo printers that produce a photo with the simple press of a button. We've also seen improvements in print quality and speed.