Film May Be Dead, but Print is Alive and Well
It may come as a surprise to younger photographers, but until very recently it was still possible to buy a Canon DSLR for film photography. The Japanese camera giant ceased production of the EOS-1v all the way back in 2010 and has been slowly selling out its stock ever since. The sale of the very last EOS-1v exemplifies how major camera manufacturers continue adapting to the digital age.
But photographic printing is very much still alive. According to The NPD Group, instant print cameras saw U.S. dollar growth of over 30 percent in 2017, while detachable lens and digital point-and-shoot cameras have experienced unit declines. In fact, U.S. dollar sales of instant print cameras were 28 percent higher last December than December 2016 and sold 2.7 times more units than digital point-and-shoot cameras.
Around the same time, it was killing off film, Canon announced its new IVY Mini Photo Printer, with a major marketing push that makes it clear who the core audience are. Packaging decorated with happy young people, available in iPhone style Rose Gold and with Bluetooth and other options for smartphone connectivity, the IVY is clearly shooting for generation Instagram. 85% of all photographs taken today will be on a smartphone, and Ivy is a clear play to put Canon products in the hands of mobile consumers.
Chaim Pikarski is Chief Executive Officer of ZINK Holdings LLC (ZINK), a privately-held company headquartered in Billerica, Massachusetts that invented ZINK Zero Ink® Technology. ZINK is a full-color printing system that eliminates the need for ink cartridges or ribbons - all the color required for printing an image is embedded in the paper itself.