Are cheaper GoPro alternatives finally killing the GoPro?

Here's an interesting thing that's unfolding. GoPro just announced that their quarterly results are lower than expected and have lowered the forecast for next quarter significantly as well. As a result, GoPro will narrow their camera selection to only the high-end products they sell -- the Hero4 Black, Hero4 Silver, and Hero4 Session.

I first questioned how GoPro would hold on to this market when I saw reviews of the Xiaomi YiCamera rolling in last year. That camera was a sub-$100 alternative to the GoPro with nearly the same functionality and ease of use. And there are plenty more alternatives that are quickly catching up. After all, even the GoPro itself is made in China.

Of course, GoPro has a few things going for it, mainly brand recognition (it's almost synonymous with action sports cameras despite other brands playing the same field) and much better app support for wireless capture (but honestly, even that could probably be a little better). For most people though, they don't care about the extras. I think people want a camera that records great video and costs cheap and those two criteria are met in pricepoints way below GoPro's own offerings. I see it as a similar choice to buying generic brand medicine on a  shelf full of name-brand products. If you're a smart buyer, there's really only one choice.

Luckily for GoPro, the end doesn't have to be near. They are introducing a drone system of their own called Karma that's supposed to be priced competitively and if that's the case, they just may break into a market and take over like they did originally with the launch of the first GoPro. I'm pretty excited about this Karma drone actually and I hope it turns them around a bit. It would certainly be a shame to see them fizzle out.