Lidia Ziemnicka-Otto
Arts Journalist Photographer

Author Poet Essayist

Lidia Ziemnicka-Otto
Internationally published poet,
literary fiction writer, essayist, arts writer/journalist

Professional Fine Art Photographer
in landscape, architecture and fine art portrait photography

Writing is creating new worlds which unfold in the reader's heart.
Lidia Ziemnicka-Otto

       The Trends 2017 in the Photography Industry Presented 
       at the Business Forum Imaging Cologne 2017 - 
       "Moving Beyond the Limits"
       					by Lidia Ziemnicka-Otto


Manufacturers, imaging service providers, commerce and media representatives met on 1 and 2 March 2017 at the Business Forum Imaging Cologne to present and discuss the trends and future of the photography and imaging industry. The title of the conference - "Moving beyond the limits" - suggests the general approach towards the recent and future developments in the photography and imaging market. International top managers of the imaging industry, experts, scientists and pollsters presented in a total of 14 speeches the right strategies for imaging services, retailers, professional photographers, video producers and manufacturers to approach successfully the recent and future trends in the photography and imaging market. The imaging industry showed full confidence in its future and the growth of the photography market despite the well known developments in the traditional segments. The market research company GfK Retail and Technology presented the trends in the photography industry and the chances of growing turnover if the new solutions will be applied. According to GfK, the global digital market is likely to see a YoY (Year over Year) value decrease of 2% based on traditional categories in 2017. However, the category Photo remains stable in share with expected value growth of 2%. Expected value growth in 2017 for selected photo categories: 4K +27% Smartphones +1% Action Cams -2% SLR/CSC -9% Tablets -11% The global sales value of Picture Taking Devices is EUR 23 billion in the forecast for 2017 which equals the global sales value in 2016. The sales value of cameras and lenses is likely to increase up to 53%. The sales figures of the digital cameras of value more than EUR 1000 will possibly stay stable or may increase while the sales value of lenses will decrease by 7%. Further, the forecast shows different developments for selected camera types. The sales figures of SLR cameras of value more than EUR 1000 will decrease by 8%. The sales figures of CSC cameras of value more than EUR 1000 will increase by 23%. While the sales value of lenses will decrease by 7%, the fixed lenses of value more than EUR 1000 will increase by 32%. The greatest growth of sales value in 2017 is expected for drones with the increase of 158%. The forecast indicates the best chances of the growth in sales of the drones and the high quality cameras and lenses. The target group for the high quality cameras and lenses are professional photographers and photography enthusiasts. The age of 35 years is the estimated starting age of the high quality driven consumers. The market research company GfK Retail and Technology predicts the connectivity as the imaging trendsetter for 2017. The aim is to connect smartly all devices and give the consumer the connected experience. The photography/imaging industry presented their strategies and solutions for the future. This year, the digital service, the printing and the engagement with the photos are the main focus of attention. The target group is the young generation. The aim is to offer all kind of the printing and digital service that can be executed 'quick and easy' for the consumer. They have been developed many new photo applications to enable the consumer to retouch, print and order photo books and other diverse photo printing products, instantly after the photos have been taken. The most solutions and strategies of the imaging industry are based on the assumption that more than 90% of consumers are not interested in quality but in easy and instant action. Fortunately, some companies are aware of the professionals and the high quality conscious consumers. Canon Europe and the Swiss company Imaging Solutions presented interesting strategies and solutions at the Business Forum Imaging in Cologne. Alberto Spinelli - Director Digital Service Business, Canon Europe - presented the Canon strategy for an eco-system of digital service. The approach of Canon is unique and impressive. Canon aims to create new customer's experience. The company assists with its digital service consumers of any expertise through the whole process from capturing through organising and sharing to printing. There are three phases: - Capturing, - Remembering, - Creating. Capturing means for Canon more than only to capture the picture with the camera, it means also to connect, inspire and learn. In the second phase the photos should be remembered which means they can be found, shared and organised. The final phase is creating of the digital print which should be a delightful experience for the customer. Canon takes care of customers of any expertise, from the beginners to the enthusiasts and the professional photographers. The application Lifecake targets young parents and enable them to take, share, organise and prepare to print photos of their children. The application gives smart hints and learning tips for taking better photos. In this way, the parents' photo expertise grows and customers will be led to advanced technologies and digital service. The application Irista is for quality driven consumers and hobbyists. Canon created one common Digital Service Platform using one global Canon ID. All photos from any device, no matter if it is a smartphone, tablet, computer or camera, will be stored in original quality in one safe place. After the photos have been printed the memories can be recreated via Virtual Reality. The offered bounding service is adding value to the Canon hardware. The company lets the customer make his way from a piece of hardware to experience. The Swiss company Imaging Solutions gives priority to high quality in response to the strong demand for prints products, especially for the high quality photo books. Djawad Khorosh - Chief Marketing Officer, Imaging Solutions - presented the company's response to the trends in the photography and imaging market with the high quality offerings. The company has developed and produced its fastBook Professional bookbinding systems. The systems are designed for the production of LayFlat photo books up to a format of 45 cm x 45 cm (18" x 18"). Additional to digital printing papers the photo books can be printed on original photo papers (AgX). The LayFlat binding technology and printing on the original photo papers (AgX) in XXL format create an extraordinary look and special feeling of the high quality photo books. The photography and imaging industry sees potential for growth especially thanks to the strong demand for printing photos. This includes standard prints and large format prints on paper, acrylic glass, aluminium, canvas or wood. The remarkable demand for the high quality photo books provides a great opportunity to develop new technologies and services. Lidia Ziemnicka-Otto Arts Journalist Photographer Author Poet Essayist