After months of delays and a handful of teasers, GoPro finally unveils the Karma, its first quadcopter consumer drone.
The GoPro Karma Aerial Drone
The aerial drone is 12 inches long and 16.2 inches wide, and it just weighs 1,006 g (35.5 oz). All of its arms, as well as the landing gear, are foldable and will easily fit into the accompanying backpack, the Karma case.
It comes with a 3-axis stabilizer that's positioned up front for capturing shake-free aerial footage. According to GoPro's page for the Karma, the stabilizer is compatible with the Hero4, Hero5 Session and Hero5 Black cameras.
Note that this stabilizer can be detached from the drone.
The GoPro Karma drone has a 14,500-foot maximum flight altitude and offers a 3,280-foot maximum distance. It can fly at a maximum speed of 35 miles per hour.
The Karma's 14.8 V 5100 mAh Li-Po battery offers up to 20 minutes of flight time. It will take an hour to fully charge.
"From the get-go, we set out to design Karma to be incredibly portable. We didn't want you to have to ask yourself, do I want to take Karma today?" says Nick Woodman, GoPro CEO. "We wanted to make it so convenient that you would ask yourself, why wouldn't I take Karma today?"
The Karma Grip
After removing the 3-axis camera stabilizer from the drone, it can be attached to the Karma Grip handle for capturing footage on the ground. The handle is compatible with GoPro's collection of mounts and can also be bolted onto one of the backpack's shoulder straps.
With the Karma Grip, users will be able to turn the camera on or off, change the camera mode, control the camera shutter buttons and adjust the stabilizer angle. It comes with its own battery that lasts for 1.75 hours and will take two hours to fully charge.
"I'm excited how users are gonna use it to create the best GoPro footage yet," says Pablo Lema, GoPro senior director for aerial capture products.
The Karma Controller
GoPro designed a clam shell controller for the Karma. It comes with its own five-inch touch display that runs natively at 720p. At 900 nits, the Karma controller's display is brighter than the iPhone 7, which makes it suitable for outdoor use.
The Karma controller has two joysticks, a button for both takeoff and landing, a return home button and the power switch. It also offers a flight simulator at the end of the setup process.
GoPro added also added the Passenger App to the controller, which shares the real-time video footage with another device from which the camera can be controlled while the Karma drone gets flown via the controller.
The controller can last for up to four hours and has a 2.4 GHz operating frequency. It will take 2.5 hours to fully charge.
The Karma Case
The Karma Case is a backpack that has a molded interior specifically made to store the drone, its controller and the accompanying handheld grip. At 21.3 inches long, it is no bigger than the average backpack.
Price and Release Date
The GoPro Karma aerial drone by itself will cost $799. Bundling it with the Hero5 Session will bring the price up to $999, while pairing it with the Hero5 Black will set buyers back by $1,099. However, interested parties will have to wait until the product's launch on Sunday, Oct. 23.
Below is a video showcasing the GoPro Karma.