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06-27-2014, 10:13 AM   #1
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Why GoProís Success Isnít Really Isn't about the Cameras

There has been a general wringing of hands on the topic of smart phones, consuming the photographic market in general. They have essentially killed off the point and shoot - while the mirrorless segment wanders for direction.

Then there is GoPro - which just went public in the IPO. They have been selling cameras - and that is the topic of this wired article.


06-27-2014, 01:26 PM   #2
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“They don’t just sell a video camera, they sell the memory of the wave or the ski trip down the slope,” says Ben Arnold, a consumer technology industry analyst at The NPD Group. “I think we are entering an age where lifestyle in technology is becoming very important.”

The K-01 tried this - but it failed.
06-27-2014, 01:38 PM   #3
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But I don't think the k-01 is even in the same league as the GoPro when comes to mounting it on a helmet and kayaking a class V rapids, for example.
06-27-2014, 02:35 PM   #4
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Well to be clear, they don't actually sell the memory of the wave or ski trip. Rather, they sell you on the promise that having a GoPro will change your lifestyle, to match all the experiences reflected by their guerrilla advertising, and that you will be infused with similar utopian memories.

The basic marketing concept is to appeal to the users emotions. The GoPro video quality is not that good, but that's not the point.

There are lots of other examples out there, like Jeep Wrangler Unlimiteds. Most people don't buy them for their actual capabilities, but for the image they portray. And this is not just the image that is portrayed to others, but more importantly, what the driver thinks about himself/herself.

As another camera-related example, I think Panasonic is being very aggressive with their guerrilla marketing. Their brand ambassadors (i.e., shills) even call themselves "Lumix Luminaries", implying that they know something you don't. Sure, Panasonic offers good video quality, but owning a Panasonic does not make you a visionary, any more than owning a 1DX or D4s makes you a more professional photographer.


Last edited by Tanzer; 06-27-2014 at 02:42 PM.
06-27-2014, 03:18 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by tuco Quote
But I don't think the k-01 is even in the same league as the GoPro when comes to mounting it on a helmet and kayaking a class V rapids, for example.
The deal was, if you use a K-01 you can be hip like Marc Newson. Or fit right in with runway models.

Interestingly, PF member johnmflores makes GoPro style motocycle videos for a living with a K-01 and a Q. Pentax just doesn't market the same way GoPro does.
06-27-2014, 03:29 PM   #6
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Well I think the company is very much overrated on the Nasdaq. There isn't enough market to grow into that makes the company worth the amount off money it is rated for at the moment.

Great camera's and they still sell excellent.
06-27-2014, 04:19 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote

Interestingly, PF member johnmflores makes GoPro style motocycle videos for a living with a K-01 and a Q. Pentax just doesn't market the same way GoPro does.
At a nearby sky diving school, I've seen people mount regular DSLRs on top of their helmets. But the GoPro is still different. It's pretty compact, can survive under water and take more impact damage.
06-27-2014, 06:57 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteQuote:
...take more impact damage.
That is important for skydivers.

06-27-2014, 08:22 PM   #9
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It makes me laugh. I was taking my five year old son on the bunny slope -- skiing -- and there were kids on snow boards doing the fifteen foot vertical slope with Go Pro cameras strapped to their helmets . I figure there is a huge amount of amazingly boring footage out there.
06-27-2014, 08:33 PM   #10
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The biggest problem I have seen with Go Pros and those style cameras is guys who have wiped out on their motorcycles because they were messing with the camera and not paying attention to where they were going. I've even had to pull a buddies bike out of a ditch on a ride because of that.
06-27-2014, 11:10 PM - 2 Likes   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by kdf9511 Quote
The biggest problem I have seen with Go Pros and those style cameras is guys who have wiped out on their motorcycles because they were messing with the camera and not paying attention to where they were going. I've even had to pull a buddies bike out of a ditch on a ride because of that.
Been ridin' all my adult life. Seen one too may riders bleed out on in the middle of the road. Witnessed one too many of a rider's failed attempt to fight and hold onto this mortal coil, unequally dilated eyes darting around inside a cracked helmet. Heard one too many calls on the radio for downed and dead riders on The Crest, Upper Big "T", and Forest Highway whilst volunteering in the ANF.

All this helmet mounted camera nonsense doesn't have one lick of relevance to "the ride" and if it ain't about "the ride" then what's it about? Vanity? Nothin' pretty about a 300 foot drop off the side of a mountain. Nothin' attractive about 90-to zero into a wall of rock.

Got no love here for the "Go-Pose".

Last edited by MD Optofonik; 06-27-2014 at 11:16 PM.
06-28-2014, 12:53 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
The deal was, if you use a K-01 you can be hip like Marc Newson. Or fit right in with runway models.

Interestingly, PF member johnmflores makes GoPro style motocycle videos for a living with a K-01 and a Q. Pentax just doesn't market the same way GoPro does.
Yeah, the K-01 was supposed to be a lifestyle object. Funnily, it still gets looks and compliments when I use it; it is aging quite well, aesthetically speaking.

And to clarify, I tried to use the K-01 for a rigged shot once. Just once. It was too heavy. With a car or such you can often triangulate your support for a heavier camera and move slowly when taking the shot and either use a long exposure or post to simulate movement. You can't do either on a motorcycle, because you have to be hurrying along to lean the bike enough to make the shot look dynamic.




This is where the little Q excels. Light weight, built-in intervalometer, interchangeable lenses. The GoPros surpass the Q for video but they are more evenly matched for stills.

And yes, thinking about a shot while riding can be very distracting, and one phenomena I see is people riding faster than they usually do when they are recording or being recorded. I've made that mistake. I think it's common for folks to be disappointed in their first GoPro videos-the wide angle lens makes subjects smaller and slows apparent motion. Then try again, going more extreme for the camera. I'm surprised more don't get hurt.

I take extra care when setting up a shot and have been doing this a while now-first with a Ricoh GX100 in 2008.
06-28-2014, 01:23 AM   #13
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Well over 3 billion $ (remember Pentax was only 125 million $):

06-28-2014, 06:28 AM   #14
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The IQ of the GoPro is pretty good. I first heard about it several years ago from my daughter who is a pro skier. She wanted one for Christmas. I had never heard of it and at the time, I started a thread here in the forum asking if anybody knew about them and nobody else had either. Back then, they were sold exclusively in high end ski shops, bike shops, kayak and outdoor outfitters, etc. What they offered is something nobody else did at the time and that was a rugged, waterproof camera you could take anywhere and capture anything. I think the moment that brought GoPro into the public view was Felix Baumgartner's jump from space. Probably the most extreme stunt ever and it set the GoPro apart from the rest. It's now a status symbol to have one on your helmet. I photographed some AMA motorcycle races a couple of weeks ago and there were GoPro's in every heat, especially with the younger racers.
07-01-2014, 03:22 PM   #15
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I've run into two or three go pro displays in sports gear shops. They are making a product that works for the segment, putting it in front of buyers. Oddly that sells things.
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