The Evolution of GoPro Technology
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Introduction

GoPro, Inc.(marketed as GoPro and sometimes stylised as GoPRO) is an American technology company founded in 2002 by Nick Woodman. It manufactures eponymous action cameras and develops its own mobile apps and video-editing software. Founded as Woodman Labs, Inc, the company eventually focused on the connected sport genre, developing its line of action cameras and, later, video editing software. It also developed a quadcopter drone, Karma, released in October 2016.

Timeline

The company was founded by Nick Woodman in 2002. He was motivated by a surfing trip to Australia in which he was hoping to capture quality action photos, but could not because amateur photographers could not get close enough or buy quality equipment at reasonable prices.[4] His desire for a camera system that could capture the professional angles inspired the 'GoPro' name.

35mm

35mm HERO

Became available on April 13, 2005. It had dimensions of 2.5 by 3 inches and weighed 0.45 pounds.

digital

Digital, Digital 3, and Digital 5 HERO

These models released between 2006 and 2007.

  • Digital HERO: 640x460 camera, VGA definition 320x240 for 10 seconds.
  • Digital 3 HERO: 3-megapixel camera, standard definition 512x384 video.
  • Digital 5 HERO: 5-megapixel still photo sensor, standard definition 512x384 video.
  • 960

    HD HERO 960, HD HERO Naked

    These two models were introduced in 2010.

  • HD HERO 960: shoots maximum 960p video.
  • HD HERO Naked: shoots maximum 1080p video, 5MP sensor.
  • HERO2

    HERO2

    The HERO2 was launched on October 24, 2011. It has an 11 MP image sensor, improved low-light, and records at up to 120 fps.

    HERO3

    HERO3 and HERO3+

    In 2012, the HERO3 was announced. It came in three editions: black, silver and white.

  • Built in WiFi functionality.
  • 12 MP sensor, 4K video at 15 fps, 2.7k video at 30 fps, 1440p at 48 fps, 1080p at 60 fps, 960p at 100 fps, 720p at 120 fps and WVGA at 240 fps.
  • HERO3+ adds a mono microphone.
  • HERO4

    HERO4

    The HERO4 was announced in September, 2014 with the Black Edition and Silver Edition.

  • The HERO4 models maintains the H.264 video codec of previous versions and MP4 file formats. A mono microphone in both the Black and Silver Editions has twice the dynamic range of the HERO3, and that the HERO4 Black and Silver Editions have improved low-light performance.
  • HERO5

    HERO5

    Introduced in September 2016.

  • Hero5 Black and Hero5 Session were introduced in September 2016. In contrast to previous models they are waterproof up to 10 m, support 4k video recording up to 30 fps, automatic upload of footage to cloud and voice controls.
  • HERO5Session

    HERO5 Session

  • 4K at 30 fps, 1440 at 60 fps, 1080 at 90 fps.
  • Built in WiFi.
  • Waterproof up to 10 meters.
  • Pros/Cons

    PROS

  • Record real-life activities.
  • Panaramic view of video.
  • Built-in WiFi
  • Voice automated.
  • CONS

  • Expensive $$
  • Small cameras and gadgets, easy to misplace.
  • Timeline Video

    The Evolution of GoPro Technology

    Narrative

    Originally, Nicholas Woodman only has a vision to develop wrist straps that could tether existing cameras to the wrists of surfers. He takes these first prototypes with him on a surf trip to Australian and Indonesia. There, he tests his wrist strap with different cameras, later realizing that he also has to sell the camera and a waterproof housing. After writing the patents and legal documents from his 1971 Volkswagen Van, Woodman creates Woodman Labs, the parent company for what we know today as GoPro. Long before GoPro has HD video capacity, the company starts by selling Chinese-manufactured 35-mm cameras. Reusable and purchased from the manufacturer for $3.05 each, the cameras originally sell for about $30. Woodman sells his first cameras to surf retailers at the Action Sports Retailer Convention in San Diego. In 2005, GoPro sells about $350,000 worth of cameras. Woodman hits this goal by selling to surf shops and specialty sports boutiques as well as appearing on QVC. After being pressed by friends to make the transition to digital, Woodman introduces the Digital Hero in 2006. The camera shoots VGA video in 10 second bursts and has no audio recording ability. The first GoPro with sound, the Digital Hero 3, captures activities with unlimited video and audio. Bradford Schmidt, GoPro’s creative director was one of the first to test the camera. In 2008, GoPro makes two distinct changes with its Digital Hero 5. First, the company installs wide-angle lenses on its newest cameras, giving users that distinct panorama shot that is now one of GoPro’s signatures. The company also begins marketing GoPro’s as mountable devices, allowing people to now film themselves by attaching their cameras to ski poles, car frames and surfboards. The jump to high definition with the Hero HD (1080 P video at 127° wide-angle) opens up new markets for GoPro, which is fast becoming the name-brand camera for unique point-of-view perspective videos. The company ends 2010 with revenues of $64 million, more than tripling sales from the year before. Says Neil Dana, the company’s first hire looking back: “When we started getting into HD that’s when we realized that this could be absolutely massive.” A year after launching its first HD camera, GoPro introduces an improved version with an 11-megapixel camera, improved low-light capability and 1080P video at 30 frames per second. The company ends the year with revenues of $234 million. GoPro continues its yearly product refresh with the smaller, lighter GoPro Hero3. With three different camera types, which features the $400 black edition which now has 12-megapixel photo capability and 1080p video at 60 frames per second. The company ends the year with sales of $521 million.

    References

  • "The Series of GoPro cameras over the Years. - The Greatest Generation Society". 2014-11-30. Retrieved 2016-06-24.
  • "GoPro 3D HERO System - World's Smallest 1080p 3D camera". Gopro.com. Retrieved 2011-08-01.
  • GoPro Product Comparison, gopro.com
  • "HERO3 Cameras | More Powerful in Every Way | Most Advanced GoPro". Gopro.com. Retrieved 2013-07-10.
  • O'Kane, Sean (2016-06-02). "The future of GoPro depends on software". The Verge. Retrieved 2016-06-24.
  • "HERO3 Camera Battery-life". Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  • "GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition: Seconda solo a se stessa". InsideHardware.it (in Italian). 2013-10-25. Retrieved 2015-09-28.
  • "Clash of the Heroes: GoPro HERO4 Black vs. GoPro Hero4 Silver". Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  • Karma Tech Specs, Go Pro
  • Karma Drone Recall, Go Pro
  • O'Kane, Sean (2017-02-01). "GoPro's Karma drone is back on sale, three months after recall". The Verge. Retrieved 2017-02-01.