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Camera Phones Set to Replace Low-End Digital Cameras

Within 2 years, low-end digital cameras will be a thing of the past, according to a new ABI Research study. The quality of cameras on mobile phones continues to improve, with a 1.3-megapixel camera to be the norm on most phones by early next year. And phone-based cameras are expected to increase to 2, 3, and even 4 megapixels in the next few years, negating the need for most consumers to buy low-end standalone digital cameras. These improvements continue the trend of adding features to phones that replace many other devices, including PDAs, music players, and even laptops. Factors that are expected to influence the growth of the camera-phone market include increased storage capacity, multimedia message interoperability among cell phone providers, and better picture-management software. Meanwhile, sales of standalone digital camera sales have slowed down. In the first half of this year in the United States, sales grew 20 percent, compared with 50 percent in the same period in 2004.

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