The most surprising part of today’s announcement of the Nikon 1 family is certainly the appearance of a new size format for the digital sensor: A 1″ sensor size which about half of the more usual DX or APS-C size normally found in the Nikon D-SLR photo cameras (or those of the competition) when looking at amateur cameras.
It is relatively clear that Nikon decided to segment its marketing offering. These new cameras open a clear pathway to a new range of image quality but Nikon recognizes that the potential customers of the Nikon 1 will probably accept a slightly lower IQ compared to the SLR gear.
This is quite logical: They must avoid cannibalizing the SLR range by these new Nikon 1. Good move! Better than at some other camera manufacturers.For example, Sony takes the risk of seeing the NEX range consume a part of the market of SLR cameras (all the more because the Alpha cameras are now ready to fight at the entry-level of costs thanks to the technology of semi-transparent mirrors).