Why Is This Important?
Because up until now GoPro has been the only brand people think of when they think of a high-def, wearable camera, but all that could change.
Long Story Short
Apple just filed a patent for digital camera that looks like it will in direct competition with the GoPro.
A collection of patents released today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office included a patent granted to Apple for a camera that appears to be a GoPro-style mountable, high-definition camera.
Patently Apple, reports that the patent filing specifically mentions weaknesses of the GoPro. For example, in the patent, there is a note about the remote controlled GoPro HD Hero 2: “The single image capture system, which captures images using an optical axis directed outward from the ‘front’ of the camera [can cause] excessive wind resistance and presents a high profile that is more susceptible to damage and image artifacts from vibrations in some situations.”
Apple’s patent describes a camera with “reduced wind resistance” that can be effectively used even when mounted to a moving object such as a bike or motorcycle.
The patent includes images of what a helmet mount and bike mount system might look like for the camera.
There are also images in the filing depicting a patent Apple acquired from Kodak. The camera in the images even still has the Kodak name on it.
Image: Business Insider
The filing also suggests that Apple is looking to make their camera more compatible for underwater and skydiving adventures: “In some embodiments, the microphone is capable of recording sounds in air and also in an underwater environment when the digital camera is used to record underwater images. ”
Lastly, there is an image that appears to depict a remote control module inserted into what looks like the Apple Watch, meaning that this camera could likely be controlled via the Apple Watch.
Apple could rob GoPro of its status as a brand name that has essentially become the name of the product itself. However, they’ll have to look out for Samsung’s “Project Beyond,” which is gunning for a similar position in a way that extreme athletes, travelers and adventures are potentially more likely to get behind.
Own The Conversation
Ask The Big Question: Will Apple’s camera beat out the GoPro version?
Disrupt Your Feed: One thing we know for sure is that the marketing and design for its “GoPro-style” camera will probably beat out all others.
Drop This Fact: In 2012, Apple and Google were in a bidding war for Kodak’s patents.
Expand Your Expertise
Apple Could Be Working On A GoPro Killer [Business Insider]
Apple Granted a Patent for a Superior GoPro-like Camera System [Patently Apple]