GoPro’s new Passenger app makes flying the Karma drone a team effort

GoPro’s first drone is now taking on passengers — the GoPro Passenger gives nonpilots the ability to see what the Karma camera sees, and even to handle some controls. Announced with the unveiling of the Karma last month, the Passenger app was updated on the both iOS and Android app stores on Friday.

The app doesn’t take over the drone’s flight path, but allows the camera to be controlled by the “passenger.” By allowing the pilot and photographer to operate separately, GoPro says the app allows pilots to focus on just flying. Besides just being an easy way to share the pilot’s view of the flight with friends, the app could be useful for film crews using both a photographer and a drone pilot.

To prevent a stranger from accessing the Karma’s camera feed, the app has a few steps to get connected. First, the feature has to be switched on by the pilot. Then, the passenger needs to log into the Karma’s Wi-Fi system with the password.

GoPro says the app allows the passenger user to control the camera’s tilt, mode, and settings as long as it remains within the Wi-Fi range of the controller. Users can use the app to adjust the camera’s frame rate and field of view.

GoPro’s Karma drone went on sale yesterday, designed as a drone with simple operation for everyday users. The $800 drone also doubles as a stabilizer and grip. The drone includes the controller system as well, with both a screen and joystick controllers, while the app now allows for a secondary team member to control the camera.

The GoPro Passenger app is compatible with both Android 4.1 and iOS 9 and newer devices. The app is currently available on both the App Store and Google Play.

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