GoPro Karma Drone – Controller Pairing Issues | CineD



The series of troubles with the GoPro Karma drones seem to never stop. Since spring 2020, many users have reported having issues with pairing the controller with the drone and therefore being unable to take off. What is even worse, GoPro seems to have been ignoring the issue this time. If you have a pairing problem with your GoPro Karma, you can join the list started by Karma owner Gavin Gene that gathers all the affected users.

Looking back, GoPro’s drone project called Karma can not exactly be called a success. It looked promising with the interesting modular concept with a removable gimbal. Because the drone utilizes GoPro cameras – when a new model comes out, it can simply be replaced and users get a better image quality. The reality, sadly, looked different for Karma.

Brief History of the GoPro Karma Drone

Shortly after the GoPro Karma Drone launch in September 2016, GoPro started recalling the drones in November 2016 due to a random power loss during flight. Because of the persisting issues and the increasingly fierce competition with the introduction of the first DJI Mavic Pro, GoPro announced in January 2018 that they were getting out of the drone business and the company fired hundreds of employees.

Karma Drone with the Controller. Source: GoPro

Although GoPro discontinued the Karma Drone, the company claimed they will, of course, keep providing customer support to all the existing Karma owners. In January 2020, there has been an issue with a GPS bug that prevented the drones to take off. Back then, GoPro assured their customers that they are looking into the problem. After a while, the company did release an update fixing the issue.

Controller Pairing Issues

Now it seems there is yet another issue troubling many GoPro Karma users. Karma owner Gavin Gene started having problems with pairing the Karma controller with the drone which basically completely prevented him from taking off. In July 2020, he made a Youtube video explaining the issue.

The issue happened after some sort of update of the controller. Since then, Gavin was unable to pair the controller with the drone. After the GoPro customer support was unable to help him, he tried to find help on the GoPro Online Forum. After seeing that many other people experienced the same issue, he posted a link to an online form so that he could gather the contact details of all affected customers and better communicate with GoPro. Oddly, shortly after that, his GoPro Community account was terminated.

No help from GoPro – and no comment from them

As Gavin pointed out, nobody from GoPro seems to be interested in helping him and all the other people to resolve the issue. There has been zero communication from GoPro regarding the controller pairing issue. Is GoPro just giving up on providing customer support for the Karma Drone?

Since summer 2020, Gavin already managed to gather the contact information of around 550 Karma Drone owners with this issue. If you also have an issue with pairing the controller with your Karma, make sure to enter your contact information in the online form here. In the next days, Gavin is planning to send an official letter to GoPro in the name of all affected users demanding an official statement from GoPro regarding this issue.

It is worth noting, that we as CineD also reached out to GoPro to get their official statement on the pairing issue. Unfortunately, the company chose not to comment on it. We will definitely keep you updated on the development of this case.

Do you have experience using the GoPro Karma Drone? Do you also have issues with the controller not pairing with the drone recently? Let us know in the comments underneath the article.


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