The first GoPro clone I saw at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas stopped me in my tracks. The Ace Electronics Enterprise camera made me fantasize about a cheaper version of the ultra-rugged HD camera. Then I found four more HD video cameras with near identical specs and tough capabilities. Sure, some stood out more than others, but the digital imaging booths at the show were downright inundated with GoPro-y cameras.
GoPro’s viral marketing of its HD video camera has made the brand synonymous with high quality, DIY, extreme videography. One of the only drawbacks for many would-be customers is the device's high price tag ($199.99-$399.99) for standard HD video recording at 1080p—the same as the iPhone 5. GoPro's wide angle videos are great for recording sports as the fisheye-like view makes skateboarders look like they are jumping higher and surfers look like they're riding even bigger waves.
Companies from around the world were offering GoPro alternatives at CES complete with helmet mounts and waterproof cases. Some like the MagiCam, Iron X Action Cam and HP’s Action Camcorder were GoPro-like in appearance. Others had a more unique look—the Fujita Xtreme HD Pro was bullet-shaped while the QBiC looks more like a cube. Many of these products are not widely available yet in the U.S. and Europe, so it is unclear if any will emerge as a GoPro challenger.