Widespread consumer photography was made possible by the invention of photographic film in 1888 by the company Kodak. In 1975 Kodak would also go on to develop the first camera that used digital electronics to capture and store images. In 1986, Japanese company Nikon introduced the first digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera. In 2000, the world's first digital camera phone, was introduced by Sharp and, by the early 2010s, almost all smartphones had an integrated digital camera. The Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA), the Japan-based industry association which includes members like Canon Inc., Nikon and Sony, is a towering presence in the camera industry. In 2018, CIPA companies' shipments of DSLR cameras amounted to about 6.6 million worldwide. Being a major consumer of nearly all consumer electronics devices, the United States serves as an important regional market, with digital camera sales reaching around 5.6 million units in 2018.
Technological advancement, especially in the past decade, has led to smaller, more durable cameras that can be used for purposes never thought possible in the past. Compact, easy-to-use cameras such as action cameras and wearable cameras have quickly become some of the most popular stand-alone cameras on the market. Dashboard cams for both commercial and privately owned vehicles have grown in popularity, and network video surveillance cameras aimed at protecting property from theft and vandalism have also experienced growth. Even the relatively niche market for drone-cameras is projected to grow to nearly 20 billion dollars in annual revenue by 2021, as consumers adopt camera technology for a massive array of uses.