18mm? What the heck is it with these idiotic lens makers. We've got the 17-55, 18-55, 18-135, 18-200, 18-270 and now 18-35. What do we have that starts at 24mm-equivalent? The only one I own - the 15-85IS.
f/1.8 sounds interesting, but not if it starts at 18mm!!!
Well clearly they sell plenty of 17- and 18-something zooms, so I don't know if I'd go so far as to call them idiotic... it seems to be working. For most people the extra 3.2 or 4.8 mm don't seem to be make-or-break, and if they're that big a deal, they probably have a 10-something to get even wider...
I for one, am excited to see what this lens can do optically, and what Canon and/or Nikon might do in response. Suddenly a 2.8 zoom isn't as fast as it gets, and if they can do it in an 18-35 (much wider than "normal"), I'd be really curious to see what a 50-100 might look like for indoor sports. (doesn't have to go wide-tele, just normal-tele, still only 2x zoom, but could be very useful). Even if this came in at $1000, with similar optics, I'd consider giving up the extra 20mm of my 17-55 to get the extra stop-and-a-third of light from this lens.