GoPro is a wearable action camera manufacturer based in San Mateo, California. The company’s founder Nick Woodman was apparently motivated to start up the business after a surf trip to Australia in 2002. Woodman had been disappointed at the quality of the footage they’d been able to get; decent equipment was too expensive and too easily damaged to allow for anyone with a camera to get close enough to get good footage.
Like any good American entrepreneur he took up the challenge to fulfil this demand himself. To get there, he started off raising money by selling handmade bead and shell belts from his VW Camper van. GoPro is now one of the fastest growing technology brands in the world, with giants such as Sony belatedly releasing their own cameras to try and compete.
With its roots in surfing and California, GoPro positions itself very much within the action and adventure sports market. Their products are aimed at everyone from hang-gliders and mountain bikers to spear fishermen and scuba divers. They have a heavy presence at X Games events, sponsoring the BMX Big Air event, as well as skaters such as Bucky Lasek and Pierre-Luc Gagnon. The GoPro team also includes top MTB freeride and downhill stars, such as Brandon Semenuk.
The key product for anybody interested in GoPro is their range of Hero cameras. Currently the latest model is the Hero 3, which weighs 2.6 ounces and features wi-fi capability for the first time. It shoots video at 1080p, takes photos at 12MP and is water proof and shock resistant.