It’s been a bumpy ride for GoPro’s Karma drone. First released in September 2016, the folding drone was recalled soon after because of a power fault that saw some units fall from the sky. A re-release followed in early 2017, but now it’s being grounded for good, with the company announcing that it will exit the drone market once remaining stock of the Karma is sold.
GoPro cites tough competition and increasingly strict regulation around the use of drones as the key reasons for its exit:
“Although Karma reached the #2 market position in its price band in 2017, the product faces margin challenges in an extremely competitive aerial market. Furthermore, a hostile regulatory environment in Europe and the United States will likely reduce the total addressable market in the years ahead. These factors make the aerial market untenable and GoPro will exit the market after selling its remaining Karma inventory.”
For those who already own one of the drones (or those who might pick up a bargain as inventory is sold off), GoPro says it will “continue to provide service and support to Karma customers.”
The move is part of a broader restructuring of the business, which also includes cutting worldwide staff numbers by around 20 percent.