GoPro Karma vs. Me

RIP Karma Drone and GoPro Hero5

I finally received the resolution from GoPro regarding my lost Karma Drone in Maui. It is definitely disappointing and unsatisfactory to me. As I stated in my earlier blog, I have always been a huge supporter of GoPro cameras. With this said, I would not recommend investing in the Karma Drone. I bought the entire Karma package, a large SD card, an extra Karma battery, and charger for the GoPro Hero5 for the total of $1,600 less than two months before departing on my first trip to Maui. I followed all directions provided including calibration, mapping, safety checks, and before-hand practice. I researched the area I was going to fly and found no warning advisories, all was clear per AirMap, and even saw another person operating a drone in the same vicinity. Shortly after my drone took off it stopped communicating with the controller and started spiraling away from me into the hillside forest. Lost was all ability to redirect the drone, set it down, or bring it back to take-off location.  My beautiful new Karma Drone and GoPro Hero5 with an SD card full of video and pictures is now hanging in a forest in Maui. I spent the last week sending emails and making phone calls to GoPro customer service. After they studied the logs and communications I sent to them, they decided it was lost due to dropped GPS signal. I asked the customer agent if there is warning in the packaging directions that operation can be cut in circumstances of remote locations. I was told that it is up to the customer to read the GoPro website thoroughly and be familiar with the drone communications on the internet to see any limitations. After numerous challenges to the resolution, the only solution they offered was for me to purchase a new Karma Core for full price, a new Hero5 for 40% off, and they would provide a free replacement Karma battery, propellers, and a stabilizer. I purchased the camera only. I do not trust the Karma Drone at this time and will just take my losses and learn that companies do not always support loyal customers. Possibly it is my fault for using the drone with the same expectations that I had in the DJI Phantom 4 that had operated in remote areas of Iceland? At this point I am over it. I ended up having a fabulous time in Maui and took some beautiful pictures and videos once I had gotten over the shock of my loss. I actually checked off one of my Bucket List items by taking a selfie with a sea turtle! I will be posting a blog from my Maui trip soon. Just a warning though: Do not use a Karma Drone unless you have studied their website and are willing to loose your investment due to what I consider a weak product. This drone has limitations that I did not experience when using the DJI Phantom 4 Drone. Use it at you own risk!

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