Canon's 45.4% market share is greater than Sony, Nikon and Fuji's combined

Canon's 45.4% market share is greater than Sony, Nikon and Fuji's combined
(Image credit: Nikkei Shimbun)

Canon is still the undisputed champion of the camera industry, with a huge 45.4% share of the global camera market – which is greater than the shares of Sony, Nikon and Fujifilm combined

While Canon owns almost half of the entire market, its nearest rival Sony has less than half its share with just 20.2%. Nikon comes in third, with 18.6% market share, with Fujifilm and Panasonic trailing behind with 4.7% each. 

• Read more: Best Canon cameras (opens in new tab)

That's according to figures published by Japanese outlet Nikkei (opens in new tab), the world's largest financial publication (thanks, Digital Camera Info (opens in new tab)). The numbers are based on the 14,830,000 cameras sold in 2019 – a sales figure that has plummeted by a heartbreaking 22.4% compared to 2018, which was itself down 22.2% from 2017%, continuing a troubling trend. 

Regardless, Canon actually managed to increase its share by 2.4% despite the market decline, as did Sony by 0.9%. Nikon and Fujifilm's shares both contracted, by 1.6% and 0.4% respectively, while Panasonic's sales held absolutely steady.

The behavior of the market is fascinating to watch. In 2018 it was Nikon that enjoyed the second highest share, but obviously it has been usurped by Sony. Similarly in the previous year, fifth place was held by Olympus with a 2.8% share, but it has since been eclipsed by Panasonic. 

There's an underlying truth here, too, which is that despite all headlines to the contrary, DSLRs really aren't dead. We know, for example, that in Japan Sony sells more full-frame mirrorless cameras (opens in new tab) than both Canon and Nikon (and, in most categories, more mirrorless cameras overall since that's all Sony makes), but Canon's continued dominance of the best DSLR (opens in new tab) realm enables it to maintain an overall sales advantage over its rival. 

How will these figures look next year? The Canon EOS R5 (opens in new tab) and Sony A7S III (opens in new tab) are already selling like gangbusters, so it will be an interesting battle – though between the production problems and economic impact of COVID-19, that annual 22% decline in sales might actually be optimistic this year…

Read more: 

The best mirrorless camera (opens in new tab), for beginners, enthusiasts and professionals
The best Sony camera (opens in new tab): from full-frame Alphas to compact Cyber-shots
The best Nikon camera (opens in new tab): including Nikon DSLRs, Nikon Z and Coolpix compacts

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The editor of Digital Camera World, James has 21 years experience as a magazine and web journalist and started working in the photographic industry in 2014 (as an assistant to Damian McGillicuddy, who succeeded David Bailey as Principal Photographer for Olympus). In this time he shot for clients as diverse as Aston Martin Racing, Elinchrom and L'Oréal, in addition to shooting campaigns and product testing for Olympus, and providing training for professionals. This has led him to being a go-to expert for camera and lens reviews, photographic and lighting tutorials, as well as industry analysis, news and rumors for publications such as Digital Camera Magazine (opens in new tab)PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine (opens in new tab)N-Photo: The Nikon Magazine (opens in new tab)Digital Photographer (opens in new tab) and Professional Imagemaker, as well as hosting workshops and demonstrations at The Photography Show (opens in new tab). An Olympus and Canon shooter, he has a wealth of knowledge on cameras of all makes – and a fondness for vintage lenses and instant cameras.