GoPro is Cutting Virtual Reality Program

Back in April, 2015 GoPro was making it’s first acquisition to dive into their VR Program. It seemed promising that a healthy startup like GoPro would join the VR revolution, but it has all came crashing down as GoPro struggles to maintain market share and transition to a media company from a hardware company.

It’s 2017 and GoPro is setting up records for it’s lowest stock prices ever, and company leaders are cutting costs. After firing two hundred employees back in November 2016, they have just announced they will cut another two hundred seventy.

The VR program is in that list.

GoPro Starts A VR Program

It’s 2015,  VR enthusiasts are thrilled at the fact that GoPro is jumping into the VR Market. A GoPro VR Program meant that we would enjoy immersive, 360 videos of extreme sports and that sounds fun. GoPro bought companies that develop software that creates 360 images, and where making their own 360 cameras.

Two products where made by the company, The Omni and The Odyssey, both captured VR/360 Images. So if you have great products and a healthy market why are they struggling?

Well it turned out their products didn’t do so well… Going back a couple of years GoPro has been known to be a callback company. Meaning they have had to callback a lot of their products due to errors in production… It happened to the Hero 4 camera (which the VR rigs use), and their Karma Drone. The Drone Recall was particularly painful for the company as it had spent a huge amount of money to develop it.

Cutting Corners

So after some bad press over these last couple of years, and some massive losses GoPro is forced to cut down costs. The Company’s Leader claims that GoPro has suffered from Attempting to do to much, and that it will return to it’s core focus.

“We’ve decided to return back to that very focused business that does just a few things extremely well, instead of doing too many things marginally.”

So what are GoPro’s few extremely well done products? Well it seems the main focus are the action cameras and the Karma Drone. Yes, it seems that even after a huge failure, the company is not quite ready to give up on that huge investment yet.

The VR Program is not a priority it seems, as it has been left unattended. Considering how much the VR Market is expected to grow this could be yet another mistake by GoPro. Time will tell whether betting on drone photography was the right call or not.

Perhaps after getting back on their feet, they will reconsider their VR Program. Specially if the VR Market keeps growing.

Image Credit Tom Hart


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