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November 16, 2009

Thom Hogan on Nikon financials and the pitfalls of colorful DSLRs

Thom Hogan's latest website updates include a discussion of Nikon's latest financial results and the possibilities for future growth for the company. After that, Hogan opines on the multi-color DSLRs/iLCs and uses the Panasonic G1 and iPods as counter-examples.

While it is true that some people would only buy a black DSLR and nothing else, we do not completely agree with Mr Hogan's opinion in this case. The sub-$1000 camera market is appealing to the general population these days, not just the die-hard photographers, and for some people (hipsters, artsy types, trendy/fashionista types, Y generation, etc) the ability to pick a body color (for whatever reason) may be a bigger factor in a purchase decision than it would be for a pixel-peeper type. But he is right that having more colors increases the risk for a company if they don't guestimate the color preferences right, and if they are not able to generate additional sales they wouldn't have gotten otherwise because of the additional body color options.

On the other hand, if it wasn't for the 100 colors, the Pentax K-x would not have generated much interest until the ISO comparisons started coming out. And it is verly likely that some websites gave the K-x a higher review-priority because the 100-colors generated interest in the camera in the first place. So camera body-colors can cut both ways...

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