The GoPro Problem: Firmware

GoPro is a famous brand manufacturer of action cameras, as a photography enthusiast I’ve always had one of their cameras in my set.

I’ve always had a love and hate with GoPro, though, unfortunately!

In the GoPro software I’ve always found bugs, bugs that do not allow excellent use of the camera.
Or some software features were intentionally not being introduced by GoPro, such as the self-timer removed from Hero 4 until 7. Perhaps to sell remote controls.

The Hero 7 I had had a tremendous amount of software bugs that were never fixed, sometimes the picture-taking sound would play 3 times, the camera would turn off 10 seconds after the power button was pressed, the correct time and date would be reset, etc etc.

Basically, I’ve never seen GoPro worry much about updates. Major bugs were fixed in the later released camera.

With the release of the GoPro Hero 12 everything has become clearer, the new GoPro is basically a Hero 11 with a little hardware change (introduction of 1/4″ Screw Tripod Adapter) and the probable removal of the GPS chipset (perhaps, it may even have been turned off at the software level). But all the real news is at the software level.

So I thought I would create a table to understand how long GoPros are updated for, but the results are less than exciting.

GoPro CameraRelease DateLast Firmware UpdateUpdate Days
HD Hero 2Oct. 24, 2011July 29, 2013644
Hero 3Oct 17, 2012Aug. 12, 2014664
Hero 3+Oct 1, 2013Sept. 2, 2015701
Hero 4Oct. 5, 2014Oct. 21, 2016747
Hero 5Oct. 2, 2016Oct. 17, 20191110
Hero 6Sept. 28, 2017Oct. 17, 2019749
Hero 7Sept. 20, 2018Nov. 25, 2019432
Hero 8Oct. 1, 2019Mar. 23, 2022905
Hero 9Sept. 16, 2020June 1, 2022624
Hero 10Sept. 16, 2021Dec. 14, 2022455
Hero 11Sept. 14, 2022Aug. 10, 2023331
Hero 12Sept. 13, 2023Current Camera

A GoPro is updated for an average of 669 days after its release. That is 1 Year, 9 Months, 4 Weeks and 2 Days. Not even 2 years.

We are used to products that are updated for much longer, smartphones are updated for at least 5 years. And some users are really preferring Smartphones to Action Cameras.

Finally, I sincerely hope that GoPro will change this approach in the future.

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