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  1. Adults adopt action cameras – they’re not just for kids anymore

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Adults adopt action cameras – they’re not just for kids anymore

The role of classic cameras has been taken over by smartphones. This means that the camera category getting most of the attention is action cameras. For the younger generation, this is nothing new – they are onboard. But are you ready to embrace a creative journey with multiple action cameras, new mounting options and cloud-based editing tools, using the technology your kids already master?

Global camera sales have gone through a phenomenal transformation the last 10 years. The digital camera market has gone up and come down. People still buy cameras when they need lenses and high-end sensors for top-notch quality. And during the past five years of digital camera decline, we have seen a steady increase in action camera sales. They were initially used by the YouTube generation, who see them as a vital tool in increasing video viewership of their action adventures.

Going forward, their parents are likely to play a bigger role in adopting the technology. While the younger generation exploits new capabilities with 4K resolution and 240fbs slow motion, their parents will try to get the basics right. The first step is selecting a camera, either among available options or inheriting one from your kids. Then you have to figure out what camera-mounting options are most attractive for your videography desires. The advancements in action-camera apps on smartphones even let you control the action camera from your primary screen and see it when filming and taking pictures. This is a great leap forward. Your kids grew up shooting videos with an action camera without a screen for most of their adventures, and first seeing the result when it hit the PC.

Postediting an integral part
Most people skip postediting of pictures and video taken using smartphones, digital cameras and camcorders. However postediting is an integrated part of the action camera experience. Most of what you film will not turn out as planned and needs to be scrapped. You will find great pieces in the middle of longer recordings. When using two cameras on and off, you can create amazing videos when shifting perspectives. And last but not least the sound on action camera videos should be music rather than the natural sounds and spoken words that you usually capture in smartphone and camcorder videos.

So plan to learn the tools that work with action cameras or cloud-based variants of established video-editing programs. It is easier than you think. As an entry point, you might want to start on the editing end by using the video, slow-motion and time-lapse capabilities on your smartphone, as well as phone-based video-editing tools.

The action-camera market is still small, with 5 million units shipped in 2014. The first half of 2015 has seen strong growth in Europe and Asia. A big part of the market for action cameras is in accessories. You can see your new action camera as a platform where adding accessories plays the same role as adding new lenses to an SLR camera – they are a way to help you get the most out of it.

My predictions for the future of action camera-enabled videography

  • Adults adopt action cameras in a material way, starting by inheriting gear from their kids
  • Smartphone-controlled action cameras reduce the entry barrier and allow users to control results much better at the point of filming
  • New technologies such as virtual reality and spherical filming are still in their infancy
  • The action camera market is expected to grow at 22 percent CAGR 2014-2019 so this will not be a phenomena with the same mass market appeal as smartphones.

Written by Peter Linder

Peter Linder is a Networked Society evangelist at Ericsson. He describes himself as a versatile visualizer, alliteration aficionado, movie maker and kinetic keynoter. His contributions focus on seven fields of market development: #SocietyShaping, #IndustryInnovations, #DeviceDiversification, #UnlockingUsers, #VersatileVideo, #NetworkNovelties and #BoldBusinessmodels. Peter joined Ericsson in 1991 and is currently based in Dallas, Texas.

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