1000 units sold out immediately in just 6 hours and 50 minutes. Canon’s new digital camera “PowerShot ZOOM” set the fastest record for a total of 30 million yen in applications and purchases on the crowdfunding site Makuake. When general sales start on December 10, 2020, the sales volume share in the release week (according to BCN research by research company) ranked 6th among compact digital cameras, and it seems that it will grow into a hit product in the camera genre for the first time in a while. It is showing momentum.
PowerShot ZOOM looks into the viewfinder with one eye like a telescope, and you can see what you are looking at with the touch of a button. Standard (focal length 100 mm, 35 mm format equivalent), 4 times (400 mm), 8 times (800 mm) A new concept camera that can be switched between millimeters and digital zoom). Equipped with an optical image stabilization function, it is possible to shoot still images and movies while zooming on the subject. It’s just a “telescope that can take pictures”. Linkage with smartphones such as remote shooting and image transfer is also supported.
The impetus for the development was the interchangeable lens concept of the single-lens camera that the company has cultivated over many years. “Camera can greatly change the expression of photos and the range that can be taken by changing the lens. However, although the number of smartphones that cover standard and wide-angle shooting is increasing, there are still few that can shoot with telephoto, so feel free to telephoto. The origin of the idea was to make a compact camera that can be enjoyed by “Canon Image Communication Business Headquarters ICB Business Management Division, Deputy Manager Shota Shimada”.
The unexpected hit of the company’s binoculars with image stabilization was also a hint. Sales of binoculars products, which have been around 10 years since their launch, have grown rapidly since around 2015. Looking at the factors, we found that Johnny’s fans, who often perform concerts at venues with a large capacity such as the dome stadium and stadium, said, “I met my eyes with binoculars with image stabilization.” It turned out that word-of-mouth such as “I could see the expression and sweat well even in the farthest” ceiling seat “” and “God item” which is essential for concerts are spreading from SNS (exchange site). In September 2019, the company newly developed the world’s lightest (at the time of announcement) binoculars with image stabilization that are easy to handle even for women with small hands. Although it is highly functional, it gained great support at a price of less than 100,000 yen. “In addition to the traditional bird watching and astronomical observations, it was a great reference that we should still be able to do something depending on the appeal to the needs of seeing and enjoying the distance,” said Mr. Shimada.
What is “building block training camp” that created a novel shape?
Another feature is that it incorporates a development process that was not often done with existing Canon products. The company’s products were often released for the first time at the timing of the presentation, but PowerShot ZOOM released prototypes and mockups from the world’s largest international exhibition “CES 2018” held in the United States about three years ago. Actively list. We adopted an open style that listens to the reactions and opinions of visitors and feeds them back to product development. “As we repeat the cycle of customer verification at the exhibition and development based on it over and over again and gradually approach the final form, we are convinced that there is a great demand for the concept of” telescope that can be taken “. ”(Mr. Shimada).
A unique training camp was also held in which the design, development, and planning departments were united to make a prototype. For example, at the “building block training camp,” the existing camera is disassembled into the smallest unit parts such as lenses, sensors, and batteries. “We tried and errored various combinations many times while actually moving our hands like building blocks, and searched for a shape that matched the shooting style of the new concept.” (Fukai, Senior Researcher, ICB Development Section, Canon Image Communication Business Headquarters Mr. Yosuke).
If you look at the PowerShot ZOOM from the front, you can see that the lens is closer to the right side, because the battery is placed right next to the lens barrel of the zoom lens. The novel layout that cannot be imagined with a conventional camera is also a proof that PowerShot ZOOM was designed on a zero basis, inspired by the building block training camp.
In addition, “shooting camps” that simulate and verify what kind of dissatisfaction and stress are created in the style of “feel free to shoot with a telephoto” using a device that customizes existing products, and “shooting camp” are increasing in recent years. It is said that a “fictitious catalog production training camp” was also held to dig deep into various usage scenes such as female fans of baseball and horse racing and make catchphrases.