Score one for odd teaser marketing. GoPro has announced the date it will unveil the long-awaited Karam Drone. Mark your calendars for September 19, 2016. It took to social media to announce the date with a mini VW Bus in the frame to be run over by a VW Bus.
Ok… GoPro is getting into Volkswagen’s sign and drive event. Jokes aside, it’s damn good to see the company giving us concrete details on the Karma drone. It was supposed to be a summer release only to be delayed until the holidays. Better make sure that price point is solid. There’s competition out there, and something tells me the Phantom 4 is about to have a Pro sibling to counter any moves by GoPro.
Because watching a model VW being run over by a VW is odd, here’s actually footage from the drone.
Oh hell yes. Say what you want about the action camera company, they will take your money, and you’ll be smiling handing it over.
GoPro Karma Rumors
Damn right we are going to speculate. We have a semi clue in what the drone will look like. If you saw the Secret Life of Pets, there’s a scene in what some are saying is the Karma Drone. Another GoPro enthusiasts tweeted out an image that was the same drone:
GoPro, Karma, 2016: pic.twitter.com/hcEzLxeBCE
— Konrad Iturbe (@konrad_it) July 26, 2016
I’m not sold on this image. GoPro has to go against DJI and convince people to head to the stores in droves this holiday to buy its drone over a Phantom. Slapping a Hero4 on a gimbal isn’t a strategy. There’s more to the design or there wouldn’t have been the delays. Expect the Hero5 to be integral to the Karma.
Then there’s the second marketing video where he seemingly tosses the drone in the air. Slick editing from a handheld GoPro or can you launch on the move? That’s some serious tech to be able to keep the user in the frame if it’s a mobile launch. You’d need a beacon to keep the user in the frame and offer a smaller body.
Too many whispers have been the Karma is taking aim at the market DJI dominates. Having a compact drone doesn’t quite cut it. Unless it manages to pull off the launch and keep the action sports in the frame without the use of a tracker.
Then there’s the question of video quality. The slow-mo in the video is off a Hero4. That only happens in 1080p, even on the top line DJI drones. Is the Hero5 going to push the limits and give us a bump in fps for the Karma. That would get people buzzing.
Battery life is always a concern and if we can get 4K with near 30-minute battery life, that’ll be a win. We can hope for more, but the Karma needs to be rugged first. GoPro makes it living with action sports. Could we see a gimbal mount with the shockproof case integrated?
Lots of unknowns. Price will be a major factor as will backwards compatibility with Hero3 and Hero4 GoPros.
Luckily for us, the event will be live streamed on GoPro’s website. Give us a holiday release date. Better yet, give Wall Street a heart attack and launch it same day. They’ve pummeled the stock enough, and it would be one hell of a coup for the company.