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Micro Four Thirds is the #1 Interchangeable Lens System in Japan

Discussion in 'Micro 4/3 News and Rumors' started by Amin Sabet, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    One of the members at DPReview aptly named YouDidntDidYou posted slides from an Olympus presentation in the DPReview forums (link).

    The first of these slides demonstrates the growing market share of mirrorless cameras (Micro 4/3, Sony NEX, Samsung NX, etc) amongst all interchangeable lens systems (including DSLRs) in countries throughout the world:

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    Above: On the right axis, you can see the countries listed in order from greatest mirrorless market share (top) to least (bottom). Japan (JPN) leads the list with mirrorless market share approaching 50%, while the United States (US) is dead last (less than 10%). All countries show increasing mirrorless market share over time, with Asia and parts of Europe leading the way. Of note, mirrorless market share is up around 25% in the United Kingdom (UK).

    In the second slide, you can see that Canon and Nikon are becoming less dominant in the Japan market, while Sony, Olympus, and Panasonic have all shown significant gains since the introduction of their mirrorless systems:

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    The last of the three slides shows that market share for the Micro 4/3 system in Japan recently surpassed that of all other interchangeable lens systems (labeled here broadly as "DSLRs"), including the Canon EF mount and the Nikon F mount:

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    A few additional comments about the above slide:
    • Sony E mount (NEX) and Sony A mount (DSLR) are analyzed separately, otherwise they would be contending with Micro 4/3, Canon, and Nikon for the top spot.
    • There seems to be some very optimistic extrapolation of Micro 4/3 marketshare beyond July 2011 (or someone's kids got a hold of that slide :biggrin:).
    • Regular (non-Micro) Four Thirds market share hardly registers on the graph.
    • Like Like x 3
  2. Aegon

    Aegon Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 3, 2011
    Portland, OR
    Wow, very interesting slides. Thanks.
  3. Sammyboy

    Sammyboy m43 Pro

    Oct 26, 2010
    Steeler Country
    The E-M5 is going to put this off the charts.:biggrin:
  4. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Yes, well... hopefully since they already leaked the other three slides, it's okay for me to show you the super secret 4th slide:

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    • Like Like x 2
  5. drewbot

    drewbot Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 21, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    Good on Oly and Panny.
  6. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    It's a good thing you didn't sign that NDA. :wink:

    • Like Like x 2
  7. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Look at how far behind the US is, lol... :biggrin:
    But I'm surprised to see how close China is in the same area (if I'm reading the colors right).
  8. Liamness

    Liamness Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 20, 2011
    Worth noting that the 'market share' is probably just counting sales. There are still way more Canon and Nikon users around, they just aren't buying in the same volume as m43 users.

    Can't help but feel that, even though it's seemingly the most profitable sector of the market now, there is going to be a bloodbath for Mirrorless soon. Most of the purchases have been from compact camera upgraders, who just bought a camera with a kit lens, and have no interest in investing further. The bottom will fall out of the market to some degree, and there will be casualties.

    I think the E-mount and m43 systems already have the critical mass to stick around. The third party lens manufacturers seem to agree. I also with the X-mount system will survive, because even if it only finds a small niche, the high margins mean it will be a profitable niche for Fuji. The 1 system seems to have done well already, if Nikon supports it with new lenses and bodies, and of course a healthy marketing budget then it will be fine. The other three (K, Q and NX) systems will certainly struggle though. You can't have seven systems coexisting on the market, surely.
  9. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Samsung seems determined, and they price their NX stuff at the low end. I won't pretend to have any knowledge about what it takes to succeed in this market though.
  10. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer


    The hand pointing up in the last slide reminds me of the silhouettes of Joel/Mike and the Bots from Mystery Science Theater 3000!

  11. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    Am I the only that notices TW(Taiwan?) is actually #1 on the chart and Japan #2?

    Anyways Americans like big things so I'm not surprised with the low numbers.
  12. Perhaps a fair point. I am still very much a Canon DSLR user but there has been nothing they've released in the last two or three years that would give me cause to upgrade what I currently have. Either way though, I am still a "dead" end user to them now. I use their products but no longer spend any more money on them.

    The more mature a system the less likely a user is to keep spending money.
  13. Liamness

    Liamness Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 20, 2011
    I don't know about that. The more a user has bought in one system, the more 'locked in' they are. Selling everything and starting from scratch is a hassle. If you need to buy something for whatever reason (for a job that requires it, or maybe something broke and needs replacing, for example), you will probably stick with something that works with that system. You're right that there are plenty of users who tend to stick with what they have, ignoring the latest and greatest kit, but they will probably still spend some money down the line.

    You should, it's fun to make baseless assertions. ;) 
    • Like Like x 1
  14. lstzephyr

    lstzephyr Mu-43 Regular

    May 20, 2011
    I also use canon SLRs and I won't be much of a consumer for canon either anymore. I primarily shoot old used primes and I have plenty to do the things I want to do.

  15. You're right, I did not account for the user of a more mature system who is happy to continually upgrade for fun or increasingly smaller gains (and the occasional backward step). For me anyway I no longer consider myself locked into Canon since I no longer want any more DSLR gear.
  16. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    Looks like you are correct about TW. I am not surprised at all, since Taiwanese follow Japanese trends very closely. Sometimes, they are even more "religous" about Japanese trends than the Japanese themselves!

    And the Americans who like their Mustangs have no interest in an S2000... (Opps, hope I don't get into trouble with this stereotyping remark :biggrin:...)
  17. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    Again, I am not surprised at all. All I see the Chinese tourists carrying are Canon Rebels with kit lens... (Oops, another stereotyping remark :eek: )

    But seriously, marketing cost is high in China due to the large geographic coverage, while spending power of majority of the Chinese is still way lower than in Japan or the US. If I were Panasonic and Olympus, I would rather focus the effort on expanding market share in the US or Europe...
  18. ZephyrZ33

    ZephyrZ33 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Nov 18, 2010
    Southern California
    No stereotyping here, but these graphs echo what I encountered on my recent trip in Asia:

    Japanese & Korean tourist: Olympus Pens, GF's and G's. (Mostly in white...strange)

    Hong Kong & Taiwanese: Pretty similar as above, throw in a Leica or occasional full-frame for drama.

    Europeans and Aussies: Sony Alphas, saw a couple of Nex-7's already. You guys love your backpacks and Indiana Jones bags.

    Americans: 9 times out of 10 it's a Canon/Nikon DSLR Wal Mart/ Costco kit. And you're sweating buckets.

  19. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    At least the American SUVs are built to handle the weight. ;) 
  20. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    BTW, with this kind of market share at least in Japan and Olympus camera division is still struggling to make a profit? Something is seriously wrong...
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