How Japan Became the Heavyweight of the Camera Industry

Cameras and photography were birthed in Europe, so how did the Asian island country of Japan become the most dominant player in the global camera industry? Here’s a great 30-minute video that explores that question, offering a look into the history and culture of cameras in Japan.

The episode is from the show Japanology by NHK World, Japan’s international broadcasting service. They brought in Japanese photographer and photography writer Chotoku Tanaka to discuss his country’s picture-making industry.


“From compact point-and-shoot digital cameras to high-end SLRs, and those built into smartphones, cameras are a part of everyday life in Japan,” the show says. “Durability, affordability, and advanced features have earned Japanese-made cameras great popularity around the world.”

“This time we explore Japan’s fascination with cameras.”