Tag Archives: Delighting You Always

Canon Celebrates 90m EOS series cameras and 130m EF lenses

On 17th October 2017, Canon, a global leader in photographic and digital imaging solutions, celebrates two huge production milestones internationally, 90 million EOS series cameras on September 20th and 130 million EF lenses on October 12th. With these two major production milestones, Canon demonstrated their branding and status as a global leader in the photography and digital imaging solutions market.

I have been using Canon EOS series cameras and EF lenses for a period of time, starting from the Canon EOS 300D, one of the cameras that made a significant impact for the photography market around the world (and I was part of it). Over the years, moving from Canon EOS 300D to EOS 30D, EOS 1D Mark III, EOS 70D and now EOS 1DX.

Currently, I have the Canon EOS 1DX and EOS 1D Mark III, with the following EF lenses line-up, EF 17-40mm f/4 L USM, EF 24-70mm f/4 L IS USM, EF 100mm Macro f/2.8 L IS USM, EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM and EF 300mm f/2.8 L USM. I still have plans to upgrade and also add a few more EF lenses down the road, along with plans to upgrade or add Canon EOS cameras. The milestone 90 million EOS series camera was the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, that I reviewed recently, a DSLR camera that I really like a lot.

My photography skills/knowledge grew a lot (and the most) with my Canon photography cameras, lenses and accessories over the past 13 years and still counting (starting from Canon EOS 300D in 2004). My photography journey and adventures with Canon EOS series cameras and EF lenses had been a very fun, exciting, enriching and great learning.

Canon has always live up to their slogan “Delighting You Always” and I will never forget hearing about the story behind this slogan from my visit to Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai. Indeed, they have and I am a part of this slogan!

Let me bring you through the information and details of Canon’s two major production milestones – 90million EOS series cameras and 130million EF lenses :

Press Release 17th October 2017

Canon Inc. announced today that the Company has reached two major production milestones—a cumulative total of 90 million silver halide (film) and interchangeable-lens cameras on September 20 and 130 million[1] EF-series interchangeable lenses on October 12. An EOS 5D Mark IV was the 90 millionth EOS Series camera produced, while an EF16-35mm f/2.8L III USM became the Company’s 130 millionth EF-series interchangeable lens produced.

Canon’s EOS system debuted alongside the EF series of interchangeable lenses in March 1987 as the world’s first fully-electronic mount system for silver halide AF SLR cameras. Over the years, both product lines have continued to expand, gaining support among users ranging from first-time users to professionals. Production accelerated in the early 2000’s with the spread of digital SLR cameras. What’s more, Canon’s interchangeable-lens digital cameras have maintained the No. 1 share of the global market for 14 consecutive years since 2003.[2]

Since its conception, the EOS series has continued to develop revolutionary technologies under the series concept of “speed and comfort.” With the advent of the digital age, the concept was expanded to include “high image quality.” Canon has since developed in-house every key device—CMOS sensors, image processors and interchangeable lenses—employed in the EOS series. Particularly noteworthy are the Company’s EF lenses, which lead the industry in sales and feature such world-first[3] innovations as the Ultrasonic Motor (USM), Image Stabilizer (IS) technology and a multilayered diffractive optical (DO) element.

Canon will continue to strengthen and expand the EOS series and EF lens lineups by refining its imaging technologies, centered on optics, and by striving to combine stills, video and network technologies. The Company will also continue its pursuit of manufacturing products that are both attractive and reliable, while also contributing to expanding the photographic and video imaging culture.

EOS Series

The EOS series of interchangeable-lens cameras began with the EOS 650 SLR camera, released in Japan in March 1987, that not only featured the world’s first electronic lens mounting system, but also fully digitized communication between the camera body and lens to realize a new generation of autofocus technology.

As silver halide cameras boomed, Canon launched several models covering a wide range of user needs, including the EOS-1 in Japan in 1989, aimed at professionals, and the EOS Kiss (EOS Rebel XS or EOS 500 in other regions) in Japan in 1993, which achieved a compact, lightweight design and greatly expanded Canon’s user base. Then in 2003, during the early years of the digital camera age, the Company released in Japan the groundbreaking EOS Kiss Digital (EOS Digital Rebel or EOS 300D Digital in other regions), an entry-level digital SLR camera that realized a compact, lightweight body at an affordable price. This move would trigger a massive expansion of the camera market, with Canon claiming the overwhelming lead in market share that same year. With the later release of the EOS-1D Series for professionals and the EOS 5D series, which helped popularize video capture using SLR cameras, Canon has continued to release epoch-making products that have enabled the Company to maintain the No. 1 share of the global interchangeable-lens digital camera market for 14 consecutive years from 2003 to 2016.

EF Lenses                     

Since the release of the first EF lens, launched alongside the EOS series in 1987, Canon has produced such EF lenses featuring world-first technologies as the EF75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM with IS in Japan in 1995, the EF400mm f/4 DO IS USM with a DO lens in Japan in 2001 and the EF24mm f/1.4L II USM, treated with highly antireflective Subwavelength Structure Coating (SWC) in Japan in 2008. What’s more, in 2015 Canon released in Japan the EF11-24mm f/4L USM, the world’s first[1] ultra-wide-angle zoom lens to achieve an 11 mm focal length.

** From my archives, Year 2012 **

Today, Canon boasts 93 lenses[2] in its rich EF lens lineup that comprises such lenses as an ultra-wide-angle 8 mm focal length lens, an 800 mm focal length super-telephoto lens and EF Cinema Series lenses for video production. With a wide selection of lenses for every purpose including zoom lenses, IS-equipped lenses, fast-aperture lenses, macro lenses and even the TS-E tilt-shift lenses, Canon is well-positioned to meet the needs of various users.

[1] Among interchangeable camera (SLR and Compact System) lenses, excluding fish-eye lenses. Based on a Canon survey

[2] Including two EF lens extenders, two models available outside of Japan and fourteen EF Cinema lenses. As of October 2017.

[1] Including EF Cinema Series lenses

[2] Based on a Canon survey.

[3] Among interchangeable SLR camera lenses. Based on a Canon survey.

* Information courtesy of Canon Singapore and Ogilvy Public Relations *

The Next Wave and Trends (from Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai)

In the earlier article that I wrote and shared on my visit to Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai, my photography walkabout journey inside Shanghai International Convention Centre, understanding and experiencing Canon’s history, culture, getting closer to Canon’s diverse range of products and business interests. This was also a time to have a better understanding of their slogan “Delighting You Always”, how Canon’s products and services connect and communicate from the organisation to their customers.

During the visit to Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai, this was also a maiden life experience for me, to attend two of Canon’s high level media interview/interaction sessions with Canon key senior management. An absolute golden opportunity personally to listen, have an idea on the new wave, the next wave and trends from Canon for the next 5 years and beyond.

For this article, I would not touch on financial reports because I am not writing this article as an analyst or an economist, nor business expansion plans in Asia Pacific. This is purely from me, first and foremost, as a photographer, followed by being a technology gadget enthusiast. I would be sharing my notes that I took and wrote down from the media interaction sessions with Canon key senior management during Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai.

Inside my article, I shared about Canon’s zone on the first floor of the Shanghai International Convention Centre titled “Beyond High Image Quality”. This is the zone where I was able to have a first hands on view of products and services, the next wave and trends from Canon. For my regular readers and supporters, you would probably have guessed which particular products that I am most interested in!

There were two media interactions with Canon’s key management over two different days –

  • 19th May 2016 Media Interaction with Mr Fujio Mitarai, Chairman and CEO of Canon Inc

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  • 20th May 2016 Media Interaction with Canon Imaging Products Group – High level intereview session with
  • Mr Kazuto Ogawa, Managing Executive Officer of Canon Inc, Chief Operation Officer of Canon Asia Marketing Group, Executive Vice President of Canon (China) Co. Ltd
  • Mr Go Tokura, Executive Officer of Canon Inc, Chief Executive of Imaging Communications Products Group
  • Mr Ishii Toshiyuki,Vice President of Canon (China) Co. Ltd

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  • 120MP EOS Camera

This is the one and only prototype Canon DSLR in the world and it definitely attracted a lot of international media attention. Canon’s senior management highlighted that there is no timeline fixed on when the 120MP sensor would be out in the market.

With the development of the 120MP Canon EOS DSLR for the future, higher level quality lenses are being looked into for the future, to complement the 120MP EOS camera.

Personal views: At this juncture in time, Canon has 2 DSLRs, the EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R in the market equipped with a 50.4MP sensor. I am making a guess that a 80MP sensor is already in the works and might be ready in 2 years time before the 120MP sensor arrives in 2020?

  • 8K Technology

The 4K technology is now getting more popular and widely accepted around the world today. The infrastructure and technology for 4K are now a part of our everyday life. Therefore, the next level up is the 8K technology, it is gentle to the eyes, sharp, clear and precise, watching 3D without goggles.

8K technology will take some time to be an integral part of our life, like the 4K technology of today’s society. Canon is targeting Tokyo Olympics Games 2020 as a good starting point for 8K broadcasting. For the further development of 8K cameras and videos, they would start after 2020.

  • Mirrorless System

A topic on photographers minds, including myself. The mirrorless camera market has made headway over the past few years from competitors such as Sony, Fujifilm, Olympus. While for Canon, their mirrorless line up, the Canon EOS M is not as fast compared to their competitors.

From the media interaction sessions, Canon remains committed to the EOS M mirrorless line up. We should be able to see more of EF-M lenses, EOS M accessories and maybe a new EOS M mirrorless camera body in the near future.

This statement that I heard from the media interaction sessions, that I quickly wrote down, sealed my thoughts and thinking

“We may look conservative but we know the trends”

Would Canon produce a full frame EOS M mirrorless camera body? I certainly hope so and I certainly think so!

  • High resolution printing

When I started learning photography with film SLR cameras in the late 80s and 90s, our photographs were printed at least on 4R photo paper, placed inside photo albums. With the revolution of technology, digital photography and storage solutions, printing photographs are not like before even there are more people taking photographs (professionally or leisure basis).

I re-discovered the art and love of photography printing again, moving beyond 4R prints into A3 photo prints and large format prints. Personally, I owned the PIXMA Pro-10 photo printer and it’s a good investment for me!

The famous and iconic Red Line in Canon’s photography family can also be seen in their printers, bringing professional quality photography printing up to A2 size that photography owners can have it in their homes with the ImagePROGRAF Pro 500. For commercial and large format photo printing solutions, Canon also has a wide range of printing solutions. At Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai, I personally experienced Canon’s high image quality printing and printing technology innovation, learning from their strong B2C base, bringing it into the B2B markets.

  • Security Surveillance Systems

The need for security surveillance systems today have grown a lot, it is getting more important and crucial for business, organisations and governments around the world. The major cities around the world are expanding bigger thus leading to an increased demand for security surveillance systems.

Although security surveillance systems are predominantly a B2B market, there is potential growth for B2C market too.

  • Smartphones and their impacts on the compact digital cameras

Smartphones, they have enormous impacts on how we live today, in both good and bad ways. The impacts of smartphones on photography are inevitable, the outcomes are in both good and bad ways too. The media contingent at the media interaction sessions were keen to know more about the impacts of smartphones on cameras.

Mr Fujio Mitarai spoke about this topic –

“Digital camera compete against smartphones. Use-ability, smartphone is better than digital camera. Digital cameras – better image quality and resolution.”

“Co-existing and collaborating with smartphones”

“Smartphones are part of daily life. Idea for the future, co-exist together with digital cameras”

In the other media interaction session, the key Canon management executives also spoke about this topic too –

“Smartphones affected the share of digital cameras, especially compact digital cameras”

Smartphones had eaten a lot into the compact digital camera market share worldwide and it doesn’t just affect Canon, it affect all the other camera brands that have compact digital camera models in their line-up.

“High end (high performance, high quality) compact digital cameras, complement smartphones”

This line that I wrote down during the media interaction, showcased Canon’s professionalism, business acumen and commitment in the areas of technology trends, market analysis, innovation and progression

“We are not complacent”

Mr Kazuto Ogawa gave a technology perspective insight on how smartphone helps photography growth

“More smartphone wars, more people interested in photography, attract more people”

“Smartphone complement photography”

From the words of the key Canon management executives over the two media interaction sessions, Canon understand and analyse the impacts of the smartphone on digital cameras, formulating and designing high quality high performance compact digital cameras to complement the smartphone.

There is a surge in people owning digital cameras and taking photographs nowadays, especially in the past 5-10 years. The impact of the smartphones, mobile phone photography helps to grow the consumer markets.

Looking at Canon’s compact digital cameras line-up (at this juncture in time), the Canon PowerShot G3 X leads their line up, followed by Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II and PowerShot G5 X are the high end compact digital cameras that are suitable photography solutions to consumers in complementing their smartphone usage and lifestyle. I have reviewed the Canon PowerShot G5 X before and I liked this compact digital camera!

There was also a question asked by a member of the media contingent on whether Canon would be following a similar move embarked by Leica, whom Leica partner with Huawei in a smartphone collaboration known as the Huawei P9 smartphone. The Canon senior management replied that they would not be considering this option at this point in time.

  • Internet of Things and Canon Eco-System

During Mr Fujio Mitarai during his keynote speech, he mentioned about the Internet of Things (IoT) as an area that they are looking into, to integrate the various Canon’s range of products and services together, forming the Canon Eco-System that seeks to live up to their corporate slogan “Delighting You Always”. After returning from Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai, I wrote a short article on Internet of Things, drawing my experiences, thoughts and feelings from what I saw, felt and learned during Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai.

The Internet of Things is opening up new worlds and Canon Group recognises the importance and significance for the future growth and expansion of their businesses. It’s about Experiencing, Communicating, Educating, Engaging, Exciting, Entertaining, Participating, Getting closer to each other between people & people, people & things, things & things. The relationship and ecosystem between Canon, their products and their customers, get closer and inter-connected right now, even more so in the future with the power of technology and the Internet of Things.

Many organisations around the world are talking about the Internet of Things as the next growth area, revolutionising business and their outreach towards their customers with technology, connectivity and gadgets. This growth area is estimated to be worth a potential of $14.4 trillion for companies worldwide (Source: Salesforce)

Internet of Things, connecting people, connecting technology, connecting eco-systems between people, devices and technology. Is the Internet of Things a whole new world out there or is it a world growing more connected?

Canon has the products, services and outreach. In my personal opinion, it’s about connecting everything together in their Canon Eco-System to make it a more holistic and enjoyable experience from the input (camera/video) to the output (printing/sharing), living up to their slogan “Delighting You Always”.

At the end of the Canon EXPO 2016 Shanghai trip, I learned a lot more about Canon, their other products and services beyond the Canon photography that I know. The next amazing thing is to have a view of the the current wave, the new wave and trends of Canon’s products and services that might be arriving in the next 5 years or the near future.

Looking forward to the next 5 years ahead and eagerly awaiting for some of Canon’s products to be launched in the market! Which Canon products do you think that I am eagerly looking forward to?