Apart from the brand's popular line of digital cameras, photography accessories and other imaging products, Nikon also develops and manufactures sport optics, medical optics, measuring instruments and semiconductor equipment. The brand is owned by Nikon Corporation, which was founded in 1917 in Tokyo, Japan. Nikon Corporation is part of the Mitsubishi Group of Companies.
The Nikon brand is well-known for its high-performance cameras and high-quality optics. The company started out as an optical manufacturer, and it even made optical lenses for the first cameras of its rival, Canon. In the 1950s, Nikon started manufacturing cameras that steadily gained popularity among professional photographers. Nikon cameras were instrumental in popularizing some single lens reflex photography features such as motor drives, strobe flash photography, interchangeable lenses and viewfinders.
The line of Nikon optical products extended beyond photography and gave rise to several other optic-based products. Among these products includes sport optics such as optic and laser rangefinders, rifle scopes, laser scopes, telescopes and binoculars. Their optics have also found valuable use in medical applications such as in microscopes and prescription eyewear. The company also manufactures optical equipment used for surveying.
Nikon has a division that is dedicated to manufacturing precision measuring equipment. Products that are made by this Nikon division include X-ray computer tomography, optical laser probes, semiconductor systems and flat panel display lithography systems.