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High-schooler Nao Noguchi is a perfect illustration of why Japanese camera sales have plunged the past few years – she uses her smartphone for everything and cannot understand why anyone would bother with a separate device for photos.The numbers paint a grim picture: 130 million cameras were sold globally in 2011 .While Apple and Samsung recently pointed to slowing sales of smartphones, they have proved a mighty rival, offering an all-in-one phone, computer and camera with comparatively high-quality pictures and Internet photo downloading.The answer, the camera industry says, is to innovate and convince smartphone users to climb up the quality ladder. "People who use smartphones are becoming interested in photography; they want to take better pictures, to be more creative, so they are moving up to SLR [single-lens reflex] cameras".Another battleground has been in mirrorless cameras, which can be made nearly as small as compact cameras but with picture quality that rivals their bulkier counterparts.
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