I’m not going to go so far as to say that the point-and-shoot camera is no longer valid, but there is a very interesting article at NYTimes.com today stating that many consumers are now turning to their smartphones with integrated cameras and video cameras instead of the “traditional” point-and-shoot camera.

The article states, the point-and-shoot camera, which has been a part of American households since 1900, when George Eastman introduced the Kodak Brownie, is endangered. Like other single-use devices — the answering machine, the desktop calculator, the Rolodex — it is being shoved aside by a multipurpose device: the smartphone and its camera, which takes better snapshots with each new model.

“The compact camera market is pretty stagnant,” said Christopher Chute, an analyst at the market researcher IDC. “The ubiquity of a 5- or 10-megapixel camera phone in your pocket is hard to overcome.”

David C. Lee, the senior vice president at Nikon, acknowledged, “The market’s peaked a little.” Still, he said he was not worried. “It’s going to go up and down, but it will stay solid,” he said. Echoing other camera makers, he said the smartphone camera would encourage more picture-taking generally, leading to more demand for traditional cameras.

What do you think? Have you put your point-and-shoot camera aside and instead picked up your iPhone, Evo, or Blackberry? Let us know.

Read the full article here.