After a teaser trailer was released by HTC earlier this week with footage that was recorded by the company’s anticipated ReCamera, indications are that GoPro, and their popular action based camera, is going to have some new competition. ReCamera is the expected name of a new wearable action camera from the smartphone manufacturer that will put them in a tough retail market against the popular Hero series of cameras from GoPro.
The mystery device, which was not shown in the teaser video, is expected to be released on October 8 and from the footage shown, indicates that it will be an action based sports and activity style camera. Although it will not be known for sure, likely until the release date, it appears the device has slow motion capabilities, is mountable in various locations, and is waterproof. Even the name, ReCamera is not known to be a hard fact as of yet.
Known primarily for their smartphones, it was not unexpected for the Taiwan based company to attempt to jump into the action camera genre. The HTC One (M8), the company’s flagship phone, was highly acclaimed and named one of the top smartphones on the market. The device, running on the Android operating system, sports a high quality camera and was able to help strengthen the profits for the company, but was not enough to stabilize the financial health. HTC lost market shares to Samsung, their biggest competition.
Instead of moving forward, barely surviving on the popularity of the M8 phone, the company realized that it needed to go in a different direction, and quickly. Futuresource Consulting, a market research firm, reported that the action camera market is steadily growing and could reach sales of nine million units by the close of 2018. With the ReCamera, HTC hopes to jump into the explosive market owned by GoPro and strengthen themselves financially.
Rumors are flying about the camera’s specifications. While the teaser showed video capabilities, speculation indicates the device will likely come with a 16-megapixel camera paired with a 170 degree wide-angle lens. These exceed the GoPro Hero3 camera that only sports a 179 degree wide-angle lens and 12-megapixels. GoPro is releasing a follow-up to the Hero3, dubbed the Hero4 that is anticipated to have 4k HD recording, among other upgrades.
The market which is is owned currently by GoPro, is a difficult market for other companies to make a go competing with them in. A number of professional athletes sponsored by GoPro have helped to lock down the hold that they currently have on the market. With X-Game’s athletes and surfers promoting the cameras, and even the NFL using the tiny cameras for video in the NFL Films series, GoPro has a firm stance on the market. News stations around the world have adopted the rugged little cameras and some consumers have sent the devices high into the sky with a weather balloons to capture images and video showing the curvature of the earth. Many consumer drones either come with or are capable of carrying one of the GoPro cameras.
If HTC’s ReCamera exists and does help the company break into the market owned by GoPro is yet to be seen, however, if the camera can live up to the hype and the is an affordable option to the GoPro offering, the chance is there that they are going to give the Hero camera manufacturer a run for the market lead, or at least a part of it. GoPro is aware that HTC is a heavy hitter in the smartphone world, and with that backing, is likely paying close attention to their new device scheduled to debut at Double Exposure in New York in early October.
By Carl Auer