“What do you mean, 'your guess is as good as mine?'” asks the corporation head of an employee in an old New Yorker cartoon. “My guess is a hell of a lot better than yours!”
With PMA starting on Sunday, it's time to play the guessing game wherein I once again boldly and recklessly predict what will happen there. The usual disclaimer: This is not based on any inside information, but rather on my gut feelings, two-plus decades of experience watching the photo industry, and information that is already out in the public.
Now excuse me while I whip out my crystal ball, and predict what will happen in a certain convention center situated across the street from Disneyland...
1. Sony will turn EVIL: They have a big announcement planned for the first day of the show. I predict it will be an Electronic Viewfinder, Interchangeable Lens camera to compete against the Olympus Digital Pen line, the Panasonic GF-1 and the Samsung NX10. Either that, or they'll unveil a new mid-range DSLR. Or maybe both.
2. The Panasonic GF-1 will get company. After all, it's been over six months, an eternity in the age of EVIL, so they're overdue. Time to bring on the second generation.
3. People will ask where the Canon booth is. When they find out there isn't one, they'll be mightily annoyed. Heck, many already are.
4. Everyone will brag about their cameras' low digital noise at high ISOs. However, only some cameras will be able to deliver the goods. Canon (strikethrough) and Nikon will lead the way.
5. HD Video will be everywhere. Not just in cameras, but gadgets to support shooting HD video with both compacts and DSLRs.
6. Lady Gaga won't be there. Stephani Germanotta, better known by her glitzy pop music persona Lady Gaga, and not quite as well-known as Creative Director of Polaroid's Specialty Line, will take a pass. In fact, Polaroid will be a PMA no-show as well, despite the eagerly-anticipated return of its instant film this spring.
7. 14MP compact digital cameras will prove, once again, that hype and marketing trumps actual technological need. Talk about stealing Lady Gaga's thunder.
8. Another memory card speed and capacity barrier will be broken.
9. Sigma will surprise us, and I don't think it will be a lens.
10. The Adorama team will be there covering the show. Our coverage begins on the Adorama News Desk on Sunday. That's not a prediction, it's a promise.
See you in Anaheim!