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Camera Sales Dipping

New York– A pair of reports shed light on how the digital imaging market is bearing up under a global recession.

While compact digital cameras are expected to fall in both units and especially in dollars, digital SLRs and photo printing will remain growth areas for the market.

According to the Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA), Japanese digital camera shipments are predicted to fall for the first time since CIPA began making forecasts.

Japanese manufacturers are projected to ship 118.9 million cameras globally in 2009, down .7 percent vs. 2008.

Digital SLR shipments will grow 6.8 percent to 10.3 million units, while compact cameras will drop 1.3 percent to 108.6 million units, CIPA predicted.

Shipments of SLR lenses are also expected to grow through 2009, hitting 16.6 million units for a growth rate of 6.1 percent. Lenses enjoyed a 25 percent growth in 2008, following the growing install base of SLR cameras.

PMA released its monthly Printing and Camera Trends report for November 2008. According to PMA, digital camera sales fell 16 percent in November. Printing, however, continued to grow. The overall volume of all digital prints grew 10 percent vs. the year-ago period. The growth was powered by online ordering, which jumped 30 percent, followed by retail minilabs at 5 percent, instant kiosks at 4 percent and home printing at 2 percent.