First smartphone with 4K video is announced - what does this mean for digital cameras?
This is an odd number year (2013), so no Photokina this year. But there is a new IFA trade show in Berlin every year. This year's IFA is starting soon and it will bring all kinds of technological miracles and wonders. Acer jumped ahead of the announcement curve by revealing the first smartphone with 4K video. This is an interesting development. 4K video is a challenge on the various components, and it eats up memory a lot faster. Most smartphones take microSD* cards, so they don't have as much storage flexibility as digital cameras with CF and full size SD cards.
So what will this mean to digital cameras (from the mythical average consumer perspective) if smartphones start rolling out with 4K video, while digital cameras offer either 1080p or 720p video? The momentum is favoring smartphones and jumping ahead of digital cameras on the 4K video bandwagon will only give the smartphones another advantage.
It will be interesting to see what digital camera manufacturers will do, since many of their budget cameras are at 720p, partly because of the CCD sensors they use. Will they react quickly or slumber for a few years and wake up in 2016 to offer 4K video? They slept through most of the Wifi revolution. #hardtruths
It will be interesting to see if there will be a divide of camera manufacturers vs electronics manufacturers. The likes of Sony, Panasonic and Samsung will be particularly motivated to push 4K HDTVs to the consumers. Licking their wounds and tears after yet another failed attempt at 3D, they will probably make a big push to push 4K on as many people as possible :)
And if we see a 4K video push in digital cameras, where will they draw the line? Cameras over $1,000? All interchangeable lens cameras? Expensive superzooms? All superzooms? Granted, most people buy cameras for stills photography, however, video is a factor that is overplayed when mythical average consumers make purchasing decisions, so manufacturers feel compelled to compete on video, at least with consumer-tier cameras, regardless of usage. It's an easy product spec for superstores to throw around and filter cameras with...
As always, only time will tell...