On 04.21.10 Engadget ran this story entitled: "CE-Oh no he didn't" quoting Nokias then CEO Anssi Vanjoki who said camera phones were about to make SLR obsolete. Engadget was quick to poo-poo his vision because, as any photographer knows, the lens is an important part of the photography process and those tiny (and I do mean tiny) camera phone lenses would never be up to par, would they?
I never forgot the article because I thought it was incredibly short sighted for a tech website. I mean, who doesn't love those quote from famous tech industry giants who failed abysmally in future tech predictions:
- "We will never make a 32-bit operating system." - Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, speaking at the launch of MSX in 1983
- "There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share." - Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO (April 2007
- "There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." - Ken Olson, president Digital Equipment Corp (1977)
- "I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - IBM Chairman Thomas Watson, 1943
- "No one will need more than 637 kb of memory for a personal computer. 640K ought to be enough for anybody." - Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, in 1981
Funny thing about tech predictions, they can come around and bit you in the ass. Sure Anssi Vanjoki wasn't right about the timeframe and DSLRs in the hands of a professional with a good lens still rule, but just remember this: The iPhone is the most popular camera on Flickr and sells in such large numbers that R&D for the iPhone camera will certainly be eclipsing that which is going into DSLR's.
Still don't think Anssi Vanjoki was right? Consider that he was "really enthusiastic about HD video coming to phones" (Engadgets words), now, watch this video:
Oh and check out the Official Whitehouse photographers Instagram feed for some great iPhone shots.
That's only five years later Engadget.