US camera brand makes MIddle East foray

US camera brand makes MIddle East foray
Lytro Illum has launched a second-generation camera with a new concept of light field technology.

Dubai - The camera holds appeal for people from different backgrounds, ranging from professional photographers to businessmen.



By Muzaffar Rizvi

Published: Wed 30 Sep 2015, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Wed 30 Sep 2015, 10:23 AM

The US high-end camera brand Lytro Illum on Tuesday made its Middle East foray by launching its second-generation camera with a new concept of light field technology. This is being introduced in the region for the first time.
The camera, which was originally launched in the United States in October 2014, is now available in all National Stores across the UAE while select retail shops, including Sharaf DG and E-Max, will start selling the state-of-the-art product by next week. It will cost Dh4,999.
"This high-end camera received good feedback in the US market and from online customers across the world. The UAE is the first market outside the US where this futuristic camera has been launched," Ateeq A. Shamsi, director of sales and marketing at National Stores, told Khaleej Times at the launch event in Dubai.
Lytro Illum is exceptionally light and has an agile design. Users can take a wide range of shots without changing the lens. It is the first high-end camera to harness the entire light field - to retain the richness and depth of a scene.
The camera holds appeal for people from different backgrounds, ranging from professional photographers to businessmen to those who love to freeze their special moments in lens.
"We will launch this high-end camera in the Middle East and North Africa in the next phase after launching this in other GCC countries. We are in the process of finalising contracts with other power retailers in the region," Shamsi said.
To a question about sales expectations, he said the Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) camera market stands at 6,000 units on average per year in Dubai. "We are targeting a 10 per cent share of this segment in the first year of launch. It's not an ordinary camera and we are targeting only serious customers who know photography," he said. National Stores plans to open three new stores in the UAE by February 2016. "Conventional camera sales are down, but the DSLR segment sustains a steady growth trend. We are keen to capitalise on demand for this revolutionary product," he said.
Ashok Vannarath, business development manager, Lytro at National Stores, said this high-end camera is user-friendly and has many key features, including 4-megaray customised sensor, light field engine 2 for bigger pictures and faster processing, touch screen and a versatile 8x optical zoom 30-250mm equivalent focal lens.
"We have launched 11 upgrades in the last five months and the new product will have the latest software. We may develop a specific app for the camera if customers request for it," he said.
Sandro Fulgheri, managing director of Lytro for Europe, Middle East and Africa, said the brand is excited to launch the Lytro Illum in the broader Middle East.
"We look forward to serving the Middle Eastern photographers and consumers with our latest technology and hope they will be as excited as we are to start shooting with our camera," he said.
Salah Khoory, general manager, National Stores, said: "The launch of Lytro in the Mena region, particularly the UAE, is a momentous occasion for us. The market is very receptive to electronic gadgets and appreciates quality, which is why we are confident that Lytro will thrive in this conducive environment."
- muzaffarrizvi@khaleejtimes.com


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