Fujifilm says they will never make a full-frame camera

DPReview interviewed Fujifilm’s Toshihisa Iida at this year’s Photokina. Iida spoke about why Fujifilm will never go full-frame and what the future holds.

A wide variety of important topics we discussed in the interview. They discussed the future of Fujifilm as well as the challenges of 100MP. But most importantly, Iida confidently stated that Fujifilm will never make a full-frame camera.

Fujifilm will “never” enter the full-frame market

DPReview lead into their question talking about legacy makers making taking the plunge into the full-frame mirrorless market. There truly is a full-frame market war going as you read this. Prior to this year, Sony was pretty much owned the market. Now, Canon, Nikon, and Panasonic have announced their own full-frame systems in hopes of capturing some of the market. Full-frame mirrorless is the future format for cameras, as it is evident with the sales and companies investing into the technology. However, that doesn’t seem to concern Fujifilm.

When asked if Fujifilm will ever enter the full-frame market, Iida answered:

“No, never. Because we don’t have that legacy – luckily or unluckily. We don’t see any point in Fujifilm entering that market, particularly since we have good APS-C and medium format systems. If we entered full-frame [our systems] would just start cannibalizing each other. We’re happy to stay with two completely independent systems.”

Iida’s reasoning why Fujifilm has no future in the full-frame market because he believes his company will be stronger if they systems stay independent from each other. As he mentions, he doesn’t want Fujifilm’s systems to start cannibalizing each other.

What’s Fujifilm’s video strategy for future cameras?

It’s true Fujifilm was slow to introduce video features into their cameras. Now it has a lineup of video shooters and a forthcoming 100MP camera in the works. The coming 100MP will be the first 4k/30p GFX camera according to Fujifilm. It will be in a more SLR style with a detachable viewfinder.

To Iida, the first step to Fujifilm’s video future is to release this 100MP camera. From there, he toyed with the idea of extending recording times and making the meanus more usable for still and video shooting with the X Series.

Iida says Fujifilm still had a lot more to do – directly referring to their system’s speed. “We have more to do, more speed, 4K/60p [etc.] We would really like to attract videographers to the GFX cameras as well,” he says.

Fujifilm is keeping a close eye on smartphones

When asked which competitive products Fujifilm pays attention to, Iida responded that while his company does pay attention to the major brands, they’re also very carefully watching smartphones. “Our biggest potential challenge is from smartphones, not competitor cameras,” says Iida. Fujifilm’s entry-level mirrorless cameras can get pretty competitive with smartphones, considering those offer entry-level cameras and practically everyone has one.

“The quality and functionality – we have to watch that segment very carefully, especially considering our entry-level mirrorless cameras,” says Iida.

What the company pays most attention to is things like smartphones’ usability and shooting options.

Will Fujifilm create dedicated video cameras?

“Potentially, yes,” says Iida, meaning we could be getting video-focused cameras from Fujifilm in the future. While there’s no concrete plans, Iida says his company understands the requirements of videographers and how usability and menus need to be different from still photographers. “… video is totally different,” saus Iida.

This is exciting news and we’ll welcome any video-centered system from Fujifilm.

You can read the entire DPReview interview with Toshihisa Iida at dpreview.com.

Sean Berry
Sean Berry
Sean Berry is Videomaker's managing editor.

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