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Old Jul 23, 2003, 5:59 PM   #1
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Default Kodak axing jobs because of digital

interesting .....

http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/...853166282.html
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Old Jul 23, 2003, 8:26 PM   #2
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Fuji didn't have a problem.

It is really Kodak's own fault that they are in this position. Digital offered a huge opportunity and Kodak simply keeps dropping the ball. They build expectations too high and then fail to deliver, IMO.

Take a look at their latest dSLR, the DCS Pro 14n. People were rumoring, mouths were watering, and people were just in a frenzy to get their hands on a real production version of this camera. Then it became available and Kodak's camera didn't impress at all. The Kodak forum here is full of these disappointed opinions.

Then consider their reputation in film. They have only one market leader in this group, Tri-X B/W film. The color film market belongs to FujiFilm with their Velvia, Reala, and NPx lines. Kodak is definitely making a strong showing with Portra, but they are nowhere near the leader.

So in the end they are an also-ran in the digicam market, they have been out-engineered in the film market, and they are finally suffering from these problems.
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Old Jul 23, 2003, 10:30 PM   #3
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What I found VERY interesting was the acknowledgement that there is an opportunity to satisfy the consumers need for easier printing .... (i.e. at aspect ratio of digicams not 4x 6 ratio)

About time someone woke up and saw a glaring opportuinty.
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Old Jul 24, 2003, 5:03 AM   #4
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Kodak like Polaroid run their business on the basis of tieing up a vertical operation around heavy patents on their products and locking consumers and the supply chain into their technology.

Along comes digital imaging centred around 3rd party PC products. Others were quick to respond and see the potential of being key players in a horizontal market and got there first with products and features which consumers wanted at a price they could afford and with freedom to use with other competing vendor products.

This all sounds like a re-run of IBM versus MS and complacency of market dominance to assume change will not happen so quickly that their position is threatened.

As we say KODAK could have been out front, and Aspect ratio is a big issue for getting digi pics on future displays and paper media. Printers is another area where Kodak imaging could have been succesful. But look at Dye sub printers. Chemical is their business, but where are they in next generation dye subs on price, performance and media costs? Perhaps they need to re-focus on what their business really is and strip out overheads: Chemical products is a dying market. Technology driven products in a high volume market which is fast moving, needs corresponding fast delivery to meet changing consumer expectation.

Watch what's happening in SHD 4000 line electronic cinema developments with the likes of Christie/Sony and others producing new high power digital projectors,RAID Mass storage devices reducing in price and high data rate digital bandwidth with compression technology becoming more readily available.

Where will that leave the mass consumption of cinema film and worldwide distribution systems? This technological change is equivalent to the arrival of email and its effect on snailmail businesses.

Just leave it to Fuji et Al to keep building market share at Kodak's expense. The more smaller less dominant players out there, the better and cheaper will be the products we buy.
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Old Jul 24, 2003, 12:18 PM   #5
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It wasn't long ago that Kodak made some competitive consumer digicams. Then suddenly they get left behind. I can't think of any Kodak digicam which would suit an enthusiast - they seem slow to move.

By now I thought Kodak would be leading the race or up there with the big names.

I still think all the manufacturers are off the pace. Pentax have come closest with there latest 5x optical zoom job - almost ideal for such a compact camera.

I find it hard to believe the manufacturers are watching sites like this to see what the customer wants e.g. AA bats etc.

I think if I was a big digicam name I'd be speaking to Steve to get some sort of opinion poll going - then make that ideal camera.

It's incredible that no one has produced another 2100UZ. Panasonic almost did it, but its a P+S - shame that.

I just feel they need to be told to get off their buts and get going.
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Old Jul 24, 2003, 12:42 PM   #6
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"I just feel they need to be told to get off their buts and get going"...

Yes I'd agree with that, but it's quite common to find that large corporations can't run in the fast pace of innovative business - too much dead wood ideas and inappropriate culture, 'we've always been at the top protected by our patents- so the profits will keep rolling in'!

It's sad that in the past I'd put my trust in Kodak first for imaging, but those committed guys who had the brains have probably gone and the core values of imaging expertise at consumer level are now a little difficult to find.

About 9 months ago I wrote to the MD of a big store chain in UK who were still taking in film for processing and ignoring the digicam user. I'm pleased to say they are now offering really good prices and service on printing from digi media. Sometimes it helps to open up their eyes, even as a lowly consumer mortal!
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Old Jul 24, 2003, 10:46 PM   #7
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Monks lost their job when the printing press was invented, stable boys lost their job when the auto was invented and everyone from musicians to copy boys lost their jobs when the computer came along. This scenario has been going on pretty much with every development in technology in the past couple of centuries. It doesn't make it any easier to know this if you happen to be one of the people losing your job, though........
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Old Jul 24, 2003, 11:11 PM   #8
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A very interesting post. Firstly, online polls are garbage, I work in MR and EVERY online poll you see is totally and utterly USELESS.

Mind you, i agree with you, you'd think SOMEONE would be looking at the 4 major site .. Steve, Dpreview, Image resource and the other one ... because they ALL say the same thing. We want AA batteries, we NEED an AF lamp/beam, we want at least 3x zoom, a slightly wider angle and STABALISED lenses when big zooms are involved.

Those things pop up CONSTANTLY, .. if you packaged them in one you'd see the money ROOOOL in. Pentax's 450/550 is clos ewitht hat 5x zoom but it can't focus in low light .. i mean .. for $1300 you want focused pics indoors

The same things keep on continuously popping up and it seems no one notices. if someone made another big stabalised lens at MORe than 2mp and with something resembling manual control .. IMAGINE the sales :shock: :shock:

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve6
I still think all the manufacturers are off the pace. Pentax have come closest with there latest 5x optical zoom job - almost ideal for such a compact camera.

I find it hard to believe the manufacturers are watching sites like this to see what the customer wants e.g. AA bats etc.

I think if I was a big digicam name I'd be speaking to Steve to get some sort of opinion poll going - then make that ideal camera.

It's incredible that no one has produced another 2100UZ. Panasonic almost did it, but its a P+S - shame that.

I just feel they need to be told to get off their buts and get going.
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Old Jul 25, 2003, 12:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
you'd think SOMEONE would be looking at the 4 major site .. Steve, Dpreview, Image resource and the other one ...
. Well, at least one employee of a digicam manufacturer is looking at this site. If you look at the topic under the hp forum entitled "ac adapter for hp 850" you'll see that one of the replies was given by an hp employee.
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Old Jul 25, 2003, 12:47 AM   #10
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My idea of the perfect digicam would be this: An ultra zoom such as 10x optical with image stabilization, the lens would have to be super quality with little to no CA's, a low light focus assist, manual controls and full auto, AA batteries, somewhat compact like the new Oly 740 and 750, manual ISO control that at least ranges from 50 to 400, a decent built in flash plus a hotshoe for an external flash.

I imagine that I will have to wait a long time for my perfect digicam to come along, and I will probably have bought a digi SLR by then. It would be nice if the big name manufacturers were checking out these sites for ideas of what the consumer wants.
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