Digital Camera World: Olympus to make camera phones with Samsung (report)

John M Flores

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JonSnih

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I have my doubts. What would be more interesting is if Olympus/OMDS could get a line on a more advanced M43 sensor.
It's not all about sensor. OMDS needs collaboration with a key consumer electronics (or a smartphone) vendor to earn money. This is how Leica keeps ILC business running. In long run ppl will buy less cameras and lenses. Volume is no longer there.
 
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I still don't like the continueing mix up between Olympus and OM Digital Solutions, even though they seem to keep the brand name Olympus for the time veing, I still don't k ow whether they will on the long term. On to the actual topic, quite a lot of smartphone manufacturers have teamed up with camera or lens manufacturers to develop products, whether these are really beneficial or not is a different topic. Sometimes I get the impression some companies are just licensing a brand name, slap it on their phone's camera to make it more interesting, but that's about it.

For example I don't know how much Leica is actually in any of the more advanced Huawei phones. So at the moment I'm bot sure what OM Digital could bring on the table which might interest Samsung.
 

PakkyT

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Could be the "Olympus" code name was actually meant to refer to the Greek mountain of the gods and could have easily been something like Zeus or Apollo instead.

As I have been using Samsung phones for sometime now, I would have no problem with seeing Olympus (the camera company) have something to do with the phones' camera systems, if "Olympus" actually referred to them.
 

agentlossing

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Could be the "Olympus" code name was actually meant to refer to the Greek mountain of the gods and could have easily been something like Zeus or Apollo instead.

As I have been using Samsung phones for sometime now, I would have no problem with seeing Olympus (the camera company) have something to do with the phones' camera systems, if "Olympus" actually referred to them.
When I read it, I had the same thought. "Olympus" really isn't a code name at all if it's... for Olympus! It may be a much more generic code name referencing mythology.
 

BDR-529

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I did suggest last year that Olympus should do just that: lease their brand to whatever smartphone manufacturer is the highest bidder and use revenue from this deal for internal R&D

Zeiss used to have exclusive deal with Nokia and then with HMD Global (manufacturer or "Nokia" smartphones) but now they made a second deal with Chinese Vivo. Leica has a similar deal with Huawei but of course none of these really mean anything more than giving smartphone manufacturers right to use their name on marketing material.

The biggest problem here is that no matter how famous the camera brand might be among a niche of hardcore photographers, it means absolutely nothing to smartphone buyers.

Latest example is the parthership between One Plus and Hasselblad. They even printed large "HASSELBLAD" logo next to main camera of One Plus 9. And the result? Well, a couple of major smartphone review sites even asked "Hasselblad who?" on the review title. If I remember correctly, nobody even claimed that Hasselblad had anything to do with the camera module but just assisted on colour science or something but this didn't sound like marketing budget well spent.

Additional problem here is that Olympus brand is owned by the Olympus proper. It's strange enough that they even allowed external company to keep using their brand for a limited transition period but OMDS does certainly not have a right to lease this brand to external parties. That's just as well anyway because on a second thought I believe that average smartphone buyers have more backdoor encounters with "Olympus" brand than via actual cameras and they might not associate pleasant experiences with this logo.
 
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fortwodriver

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Lol! There are about 10 different projects out in the world I could find right now, including those by NASA and Microsoft that are being named "Project Olympus." "Olympus" tends to be a corporate/boardroom euphemism for something big.
 

BDR-529

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@BDR-529 I do not believe that everyone in the world is as ignorant as that.

Reviewers, maybe. The world at large, nah ...

As far as Hassleblad goes, I do believe that smartphone reviewers - who are by definition tech geeks - are more likely to know Hasselblad brand than the average smartphone buyer.

Even if everyone in this forum is bound to know that Hasselblad stands for something expensive and cool, it's good to have some perspective.

Last year some 1,4 billion smarphones were sold but total ILC sales were around 0,008 billion. Negligible fraction of smartphone buyers are also serious photographers who own "real" cameras but they are also the only ones to whom name "Hasselblad" means anything. OK, some of these 1,4 billion might have vague idea that Hasselblad is something Swedish. Maybe a knäckebröd or an Ikea shelf but this does certainly not help One Plus sales.

Let's make a quick test about the same topic: hands up if someone recognizes "Borgward" and is willing to pay BMW-like premium for this brand?

I bet that there's not more than a handfull of readers who know that till mid-1960's Borgward was even more premium than BMW and that after 2015 two separate companies have tried to revive this brand in Europe - just to discover that it means nothing to average 2020's car buyer. Classic car enthusiasts are of course totally horrified about this because they just can't believe that Borgward isn't a household name outside their niche.
 
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RS86

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Latest example is the parthership between One Plus and Hasselblad. They even printed large "HASSELBLAD" logo next to main camera of One Plus 9. And the result? Well, a couple of major smartphone review sites even asked "Hasselblad who?" on the review title. If I remember correctly, nobody even claimed that Hasselblad had anything to do with the camera module but just assisted on colour science or something but this didn't sound like marketing budget well spent.
I think it's a great strategy. Who wouldn't want some David-factor on their phone? Gets you all the ladies and your phone will turn into a sports car!

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Stringer

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Wonder if this could be from the Olympus Medical division as they would use similar lens to what would be on a smartphone. Just using the name, as it is well known and would give the impression of quality. I have a family member that works for a company that makes medical items and also lens. The lens they use in medical do not come from the lens division.
 

amit

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Is there an option that original Olympus decided to drop the imaging devision ,just to make a move into cellphone photography?
Keep developing cameras , but sell a lot more.
 

GBarrington

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Samsung would have to get a LOT better at Android updates for me to go back to them. And I wouldn't use the smartphone camera all that much anyway. I love the idea of OMDS partnering up with Samsung, but I want to see something for OMDS come out of it besides a few cents commission per phone sale.
 

doady

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People are still pushing the black-and-white "full-frame or smartphones or bust" narrative really hard, and this article/rumour is just yet another example of that. Perhaps if full-frame accounted for more than 10.7% of ILC sales in Japan in 2020, I would be convinced, but alas...
 

saladin

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I just saw Robins latest video title, misread it as "samyang" and got quite excited ! Oh, it's Samsung? No small, purposed-for-mft prime lenses? Carry on then, as you were.
 

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