GoPro introduces API initiative for third-party developers

The move timed to a Hero9 Black firmware update is intended to allow new, innovative connections, the company says.

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GoPro HERO9

Image: GoPro

GoPro announced on Tuesday an open API initiative for HERO9 Black integrations from third-party developers. According to a news release, Open GoPro is live with the release of the camera firmware update v1.6. The Open GoPro API (available on GitHub) is the primary way for users to interact with a GoPro camera, the company says on its website

It noted the camera provides interfaces to Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Low Energy that allow users to perform command, control and query actions such as:

  • Get camera state
  • Get media list
  • Load presets
  • Change settings
  • Digital zoom
  • Capture media

The company's latest action camera was released last fall. In a recent review for ZDNet, Matthew Miller rated the HERO9 Black "spectacular" and said its two displays, bigger battery and higher resolution make it the "ultimate action camera."

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With the open initiative, developers have API access to Hero9 Black features including wireless connectivity, camera command and control, camera status, camera preview and SD card media review and transfer, per the release. The company is making demonstrations, tutorials and sample code for Python, C, Swift and BASH available and says no application or approval process is necessary. 

"Do you love to develop, tinker, or hack?," the company asks developers and enthusiasts on its support hub. It describes Open GoPro as an "easy-to-access, limited-support software platform for developers to tailor their HERO9 Black cameras to fit their needs or build it into their product through a wireless connection (BLE or Wi-Fi)."

According to GoPro, companies that have incorporated Open GoPro include: 

  • Amazfit smartwatches: Wirelessly control your GoPro using the Amazfit watch touch display. 

  • Centurion Boats: Wirelessly control your GoPro via the boat's helm control screen. 

  • Orqa FPV Goggles: Wirelessly control a GoPro mounted on an FPV drone using the Orqa FPV.Connect app and see camera status directly in the goggles. 

  • Pixellot sport broadcasting: Wirelessly control GoPro cameras and manage the transfer of content via Pixellot's mobile platform. 

  • Sena Bluetooth devices: Take voice-control of your GoPro using the built-in mics on the Sena Communications 50S and 50R headsets, ideal for motorcycle and other high-wind applications. 

The firmware update, available via GoPro's Quik app as well as on GoPro.com, features improved camera power on/power off speed and consistency; Quik app connectivity; touch screen sensitivity in menus and settings; reliability when using The Remote accessory to control the camera, GoPro said.

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