Sales of u2018point-and-shootu2019 digital cameras almost halved in January, compared to the same month last year, with the demise of Jessops reflecting how badly the UK photo market has suffered, say analysts.

UK consumers bought 46% fewer basic digital cameras, largely driven by competition from cameras built into smartphones, according to GfK Retail and Technology UK Ltd.

GfK classes a basic ‘point-and-shoot’ model as a fixed-lens compact with an optical zoom under 10x.

In value terms, the UK’s photo sector fell 20.7%, month-on-month, with online sales slumping 10.4% compared to January 2012.

A GfK spokesman said: ‘The loss of a major retailer shows how much this sector is suffering – not helped by the fact that the key product category (digital cameras) remains under fierce cannibalisation from today’s mobile and smartphones.’

The UK photo market fell 9.2% in value for the year to January 2013, compared to the previous 12 months.

The figures are contained in GfK Market-i, a report designed to give an insight into the UK’s retail durables market.

Jessops closed its entire high-street store network on 11 January, two days after falling into administration.