In 2004, before personal action cameras were considered a class of consumer photography products, a little startup called GoPro released its first waterproof disposable-like camera that used a 35mm roll of Kodak film. That 35mm GoPro sold over US$150,000 in the first year, and the company's focus on affordable consumer-priced action cameras has not only driven its sales figures to double every year since, but, more than ten years on, the devices have also fundamentally changed the way audiences interact with extreme sports.
In many ways, the early days of the consumer drone industry are similar to those of the action camera industry. Apart from the fact that many consumer drones actually use GoPro devices as the included modular camera, the types of footage drones can capture is fundamentally different to anything emerging from first-person action cameras and land-based cinematography. Drones are forging a new frontier of cinematography, and starting to hit a price point that makes them appealing to a broad audience.