[B]efore Kodak, photographs of death and other somber themes were far more common than in the snapshot era that followed. Kodak pitched its cameras, through a series of different ad campaigns, as vehicles for capturing good times, good memories, good stories. Not war, but the letter a soldier would read to comfort himself while in the trenches. Kodak's themes resonated with a newly wealthy, pre-Depression American population that liked to go on vacation and camping. It said to them: you can capture the good life with the press of a button.
John Paul Titlow blames the smartphone for killing the company.