Apple awarded patent for remote action camera, sending GoPro’s stock sinking

Is Apple really planning an action cam? GoPro shareholders certainly think so
Apple's action cam patent

Apple's action cam patent

When it comes to small, useful gadgets, you typically don’t want Apple as a competitor. GoPro found that out yesterday, as even the hint of an Apple action cam sank the price of its shares.

Let’s back up: early on Tuesday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office released info on new patents secured by Apple, and one was for a remote digital camera that could also be controlled by a wristwatch. The camera would be usable underwater and easily mounted to helmets, bikes, and more. Sound familiar?

Of course, there’s no indication that Apple actually plans on releasing a rugged action cam - and if it does, the device probably won't look anything like that chunky, years-old concept art. It’s entirely possible that this tech will be used in other Apple devices, or even not at all. But the mere thought of Apple entering the market had investors down on GoPro in a hurry.

Apple's action cam patent

Apple's action cam patent

As Bloomberg reports, GoPro shares in the United States (listed on the NASDAQ) saw their biggest tumble since August, dropping more than 12% to finish the day at $49.87 (about £33). GoPro had its initial public offering in June at $24 a share, and it’s been up and down since, reaching a high of $98.47.

However, as suggested later by AppleInsider, the reaction may be overblown: the original patent filing came via Kodak (as seen up top), and Apple purchased the rights from the company in 2012. Apple certainly still could do something with it, but the sting doesn’t feel as strong when it’s not something built from within Cupertino’s own labs.

As is often the case with Apple news like this, a lot of it is bluster and speculation until something concrete eventually comes along (or doesn’t). But even that is enough to send a chill down the spines of potential competitors these days.

[Sources: Bloomberg, AppleInsider]

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