GoPro is rumoured to be releasing a new budget model soon—but it appears a Best Buy in El Paso, Texas has jumped the gun and accidentally stocked them onto its shelves. Look for yourselves:
@BryanDisagrees @Gizmodo I spotted a GoPro Hero (the normal, non-black model) with some kind of redesign to match 5's and 6's. Seen yesterday at Best Buy, it doesn't come up on gopro's official website. pic.twitter.com/HuFhr6eWUD
— Anry Black (@black_anry) March 28, 2018
Twitter user Anry Black reached out to Gizmodo with a photo of the gadget just sitting out in the open. The faceplate very closely resembles that of the Hero5 Black and Hero6 Black, but the SKU number returns no results on Best Buy’s website. A customer service representative from an El Paso Best Buy location claimed that the model depicted above was not in their inventory.
Could it be some sort of packaging error? Not likely. Among the specs listed on the box is a 10MP sensor—less than the current line of GoPros, other than the much different-looking Session5. The $199 (£162) price is also cheaper than anything sharing that faceplate design. And Anry told Gizmodo over DM that, behind this device, the rest of the row looked exactly the same.
The major giveaway is the model number: CHDHB-501. It doesn’t match any current GoPro camera, but a search for it it does turn up landing pages on CNET, one of which links to a Walmart page that isn’t live yet.
This Best Buy location can at least rest easier knowing it may not be the first store to accidentally stock the unreleased GoPro. A photo circulating around Reddit’s r/GoPro from three days ago depicts the same model in a locked case.
So yeah, it’s near-certain this is a new, budget-priced GoPro: not quite as powerful and a little squarer and fatter than its more expensive brethren, based on the dimensions listed on its Best Buy in-store description. And most importantly, for the same price as the Session5 currently runs, it looks like it’ll have a touch screen.
Will this be enough to save a company which recently laid off several hundred employees and 86ed its disastrous Karma drone? With companies like Xiaomi cornering the low-end of action cams, it’s hard to imagine this as the start of a comeback.