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Canon Patent Application: Replacing the shutter button
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Canon Patent Application: Replacing the shutter button

This is an interesting patent.  In this case, Canon is looking at exchanging the shutter button with a more context-sensitive touch area that will allow for multiple actions depending on where you are in the camera or menu.  Look at area 61.  Where's the shutter?

While initially, I was horrified by the thought of replacing the shutter button, I can imagine the usefulness of this. Imagine your eye up to the viewfinder and being able to navigate and change menu items without moving your finger from the shutter button, or in this case, moving the AF position without moving your finger from the shutter area. You could literally do everything without moving your eye or your index finger from the shutter area.

The sensor area acts as a strain gauge which would detect a "press" versus a "swipe".  I would assume then it could detect different force levels to determine a half press - but that would be nearly impossible to do in practice without a physical switch.

We're all VERY particular about how our shutter button feels, this would have zero feeling, and just be an area you press on.  It would take a long time to get used of after decades with a physical shutter button. 

If we thought the war between EVF and OVF was bad, this would be I think even worse.

Of course, we then have how do you use this with glove,etc.

One benefit not mentioned is waterproofing, as this would be highly waterproof, and one of the major ingress points on a camera is the shutter button.

I think if this was perfected and still maintained some feel of a switch, this would be VERY useful.  

Japan Patent Application 2020-201756

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How to view Japan Patent applications.

Unfortunately, there's no direct way of linking to the patent application (sad!) however, this is the easiest process to view a japan patent or application.

  1. Go to the Japan Patent Office search page.
  2. If it's a patent application (they are usually in the format of Year-Number ie: 2017-011300) then type the patent application number into the second field down from the top where it says publication of patent application. 
  3. Click on search.
  4. Then click on the patent application number link, and there's the patent application!

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