GoPro gives best look yet at its ‘Karma’ drone, still doesn’t show it
The development of GoPro’s new drone, the Karma, has been carefully guarded; there are still no details, no pictures of the drone itself and no firm release date (sometime in 2016, probably). But there is a new video of the drone (supposedly) in action.
But before you understandably yawn at the prospect of looking at yet more footage of a drone taking nice aerial shots of people doing frankly questionable acrobatics on water/snow/lava, this new look at Karma reveals that it may be able to do some interesting things its competitors cannot.
The video features skiers hooning down the slopes of Aspen, performing choreographed ski jumps, but the most interesting section the 1:13 min clip comes at 37 seconds — where incidentally we can see GoPro has blurred out the reflection of the Karma drone in the skiers goggles.
At this point the skier holding the Karma drone lets it go, just as he leaves a ski jump to perform a somersault. The drone then seamlessly carries on flying up to capture the stunt from the air. Whether it stays locked onto its subject, like the Hexo+ and Lily drones do, is unclear from the footage.
Still, it’s a nice trick to allow the Karma to be launched on the move. DJI has just teamed up with Ford to build a rescue drone that launches from a moving car, for example.
Indeed, GoPro set out to make its own drone after its partnership with DJI fell apart. DJI CEO Frank Wang Tao said at the time that GoPro wanted two thirds of the profit leaving DJI with one third, and that “they dealt with us like how they dealt with Taiwanese original equipment manufacturers, so we never had a successful official partnership”.