There’s probably no other company as new and successful in the photo/video industry as GoPro. Founded in 2002, it has not only become one of the most popular products, but also gave birth to a whole new category of action cameras. But its use isn’t limited only to sport, fun and adventure seeking. It’s also used by NASA, Hollywood and has other commercial applications, mostly due to its great value of compactness, price and image quality.
But GoPro doesn't rest on past achievement and moves forward, so recently they've announced an upgrade to their cameras.
Let’s start with the HERO line. The newly announced line HERO 5 has a new image processor that enables it to have more features than its predecessor, despite having the same sensor, which is capable of 12MP RAW stills and 4K video @ 30fps or 1080p @ 120fps.
It is also now water resistant withouta casing, but only up to 10 meters, so you may go swimming with it but not diving.
The huge improvement of this year’s model is it’s new user interface, which now utilizes a 2-inch touchscreen, something that was missing from the previous HERO 4 Black flagship, as well as a new voice-control functionality, so you can operate the camera hands-free.
This camera will retail for $399.
The other camera announced was a new generation of Session. Now it’s called HERO5 Session and it inherited the same stripped down concept as its GoPro predecessor, only this time with the performance almost exactly matched to it's bigger brother: stills of 10MP, 4k video @ 30fps and 1080p @ 90fps. Albeit, it still relies on a smaller 1/3” sensor instead of 1/2.3”, so the image quality won’t be as good (for reference, iPhone 7 has the same sensor size – 1/3”).
It also features all the same new features as Hero 5, such as auto upload to cloud and voice control, but lacks GPS and RAW capture.
It will retail for $299 with the first generation Session still available for $199.
GoPro also announced a new subscription based cloud service – Plus – to which these new cameras will be able to automatically dump all the footage when connected to power and Wi-Fi, allowing you to view, edit and download the footage later from any device of your choosing. The subscription will be available sometime next month, at the price of around $5/month.
GoPro also decided to take on an absolutely new segment for them – arial photography and videography. With the announcement of the Karma drone which has several unique features and appealing pricing ($799 for drone only and $1099 bundled with HERO 5) it has a good chance to take a significant piece of the market share as well as expand the buyer audience from hobbyists to more casual users. We'll take a closer look at this drone in our coming Best Drones for Ariel Photography round-up. So stay tuned!