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Canon Announces a new online image strategy Canon Image Gateway

Canon Announces a new online image strategy Canon Image Gateway - digital camera and photography news


Cologne, September 25th 2002, Today Canon announced a full online solution package for its users branded as Canon Image Gateway (CIG), including downloadable updates for digital cameras similar to the trend for personalizing ring tones on mobile phones. CIG also offers a range of online services such as photo albums, photo printing and distributing images to mobile phones. Canon Image Gateway will be offered by all Canon subsidiaries across Europe.

Unique to the Canon Image Gateway site the “My Camera” feature allows Canon photographers to individualize and update the software in digital cameras. The first cameras to support this new direction will be the new PowerShot G3, the PowerShot S45 and the IXUS V³. The objective is to have the whole range of new cameras supported within the site.

Initially the My Camera function will allow users to change the starting image, sound effects, such as shutter speed, and function icons on their camera. Canon is committed to expanding more advanced functions in the near future. To access the services, registration is provided via bundled Canon software ImageBrowser and ZoomBrowser.

“This approach can change the relationship with our customer base significantly as we move from having a once off purchase to an interactive relationship where we can offer value added way past the initial point of sale and greater loyalty” said Mr. Komatsuzaki, Executive Vice President, Canon Consumer Imaging, Europe. “These services are exclusive to Canon customers and will enhance and extend our contact and feedback from the customers.”

The site also offers the widely popular functions of photo albums for sharing digital photos on line with family and friends. Each member will get 50 megabytes storage free of charge to store their prints. Online printing services will also be introduced allowing images to be delivered straight to the home from uploaded images on the Internet. Online printing functions will follow the launch of My Camera.

“CIG is a cornerstone strategy of Canon's leadership in what it describes as the digital revolution” said Komatsuzaki. “Presently, we are seeing the biggest single change in imaging in 50 years impacting virtually every aspect of how people take photos, develop or print photos and share photos across the web.

A comprehensive and personal web offering is viewed as critical component for success along with providing leading digital camera hardware and Bubble Jet Photo printing.

CIG will offer a complete and ongoing support platform to Canon's valued customer base. This is really going in the direction of one to one marketing contact between final user and manufacturer. Another advantage, CIG is also predicted to speed up feedback to Research & Development and ultimately product lifecycle and quality assurance.

Canon Inc has already launched CIG in Japan as a global initiative. The European sites will be customized to fit local market needs.

The full site launch is being planned January 2003.
September 25, 2002
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