Sony steps up D-SLR battle with new mid-range model

Sony is taking the fight to Canon and Nikon with the launch of an advanced D-SLR in November.

Sony steps up D-SLR battle with new mid-range model

The DSLR-A700 comes with 12.24 megapixel resolution and is expected to sell for about $1,500. It will face stiff competition from the Nikon D300 and the Canon 40D, which were both announced last month.

The A700 is only Sony’s second stab at the digital SLR camera, following its entry level and PC Pro A-listed DSLR-A100.

The Tokyo-based electronics and entertainment conglomerate is the world’s second-largest digital camera maker behind Canon but lags also behind Nikon in the digital SLR camera market.

Digital cameras, along with camcorders, are Sony’s cash cow products as its vertically integrated business model, where key products such as image sensor chips are manufactured in-house, allows high profit margins.

Sony aims to raise its market share in the digital SLR camera market to 10% with the help of the new model from about 7% now, according to Keiichi Ishizuka, deputy senior general manager at Sony’s digital imaging business group.

“Well-established SLR camera makers are formidable rivals,” Ishizuka claims. “What we need to do first is keep expanding our product offerings. Only by doing that steadily can we compete with them in a true sense. Today, we took that one step forward.”

Besides the entry model and the A700, Sony plans to offer a top-end, flagship model as early as next April, covering the full digital SLR camera market.

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