LensVid Exclusive: What Happened to the Photography Industry in 2014?

2013 was the worst year for the photography industry in a long long time. A few days ago CIPA (the Camera & Imaging Products Association) published the official numbers of the photography industry for 2014. So did the industry bounce back or did the fall continue downhill, and what does it all mean for us as consumers?

Last year we published an article, video and an infographic showing some of the more interesting numbers which tells the real story behind the big fall of the camera industry market in 2013. The story went viral and was picked up by most of the major photography websites around the world.

Today we are continuing the tradition and looking at the data from 2014 with an updated  infographic (below) and a new video. As you can see almost all the numbers are down. Here are a few key points:

  • Camera manufacturing/sales (all types) went down in 2014 by 31% (in 2013 we looked at close to a 40% drop).
  • Lenses manufacturing/sales (for DSLR/mirrorless cameras) went down in 2014  by 12% (in 2013 it went down by %20).
  • Japan is still a huge photography market (13% of all cameras and 14% of all lenses sell in Japan which has less than 2% of the world’s population), however the rest of Asia is the only place which seems to gain any momentum in 2014.
  • Mirrorless cameras (despite all the hype) are still just 7% of the entire camera market (up from a mere 5% in 2013).
  • Compact cameras are a dying breed – going down from a 108 million units in 2010 to only 29 million in 2014 (and this number is likely to go down even further in 2015).
  • Predicting the future of the camera market proved challenging in the past – IDC (the American market research, analysis and advisory firm) failed to predict what will happen to the mirrorless camera market. In 2012 they concluded that in 2014 we will see no less than 13 million mirrorless cameras sold worldwide. Only 3 million mirrorless cameras were actually sold…

New data – What Happened to the Photography Industry in 2014?Infographics 2014-01-2

Just like last year – the main reasons for the continued fall of the camera market seems to be the prevalence of advanced camera phones and the general economic crisis (but we are always open to more speculation on the subject).

So what is next for the photography industry? well, the way we see things – the camera market will continue to shrink in 2015 as well (possibly below 35 million cameras). We do think (and hope) that both the DSLR market and the mirrorless market will see at least some slight gains in 2015 (Canon was very passive in 2014 which might have contributed to the low general sales especially of DSLRs – something which is about to change in 2015 – possibly very very soon).

What do you think will happen in 2015? let us know in the comments below!

You can check out more LensVid exclusive articles and reviews on the following link.

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