Why GoPro’s Karma drone came crashing down

The dream of an American-made drone may be dead

When GoPro launched its Karma drone earlier this year, it seemed like the perfect fit. The company was founded on action cameras, but had seen sales of its flagship Hero line sink since 2014. Over the same time period, the sale of camera drones to consumers had exploded. By bundling its camera with a drone, GoPro could breathe new life into a flagging product line.

Unfortunately for GoPro, its Karma drones started falling out of the sky in alarming numbers, and the company was forced to issue a recall. It’s hard to imagine that GoPro went to market thinking something like this might happen, and of course the company would strive to produce a safe, reliable product. But discussions with drone industry experts and sources familiar with the process of engineering and designing the Karma drone, show that the company should have been prepared for exactly this kind of incident.

Read more…