GoPro Founder
GoPro Inc's founder and CEO Nick Woodman (C) celebrates GoPro Inc's IPO with family and staff at the Nasdaq Market Site in New York City, June 26, 2014. Reuters/Mike Segar

The much awaited GoPro’s final entry in the drone market is now complete. Launch day has finally arrived on Sunday for GoPro's first drone, following its introduction last month, but the company has a lot of ground to make up against its rivals.

While it may be better known for its rugged cameras, GoPro isn't content to leave the drone market to companies like DJI with its Phantom range or new small Mavic Pro, which costs a similar amount as the Karma.

Size-wise, it's small enough to fit in to a small backpack, which it ships with and the company claims is light enough to wear during any activity without getting uncomfortable. To switch the drone to flight mode, open the pack and extend Karma's arms and landing gear. GoPro Karma is a camera drone that can use the GoPro Hero 4, Hero 5 Black, or Hero 5 Session as its camera. The cameras attach to the underside of Karma with a new stabilisation mount, even though the Hero 5 now includes video stabilisation. The new mount can also slot into a Hero Grip, which can be used as a handheld or mount onto your GoPro-compatible products.

The GoPro Karma has a top speed of 35mph and the maximum distance of 3,280 feet (1000 metres). The maximum flight altitude is 14,500 feet (4,500 metres) and a top wind resistance of 22mph. It has the operating frequency of 2.4GHz. Dimensions are 303mm x 411mm x 117mm (opened); 365.2mm x 224.3mm x 89.9 mm (folded). Its propeller length is 10in and it weighs 1,006g.

The included controller, which weighs 625g and has a built-in, 5-inch 720p touchscreen with a peak brightness of 700 nits, offers one-touch operation for takeoff and landing. It has a battery life of four hours.

GoPro Karma drone costs US$799 (AU$1051). It doesn't come with a GoPro camera. GoPro is also offering bundles that’ll take US$100 (AU$131) off the total price, however. The Karma + Session bundle costs US$999 (AU$1314)+ GoPro Hero 5 costs US$1,099 (AU$1445). All Karma kits comes with the drone, the controller, the stabilising mount, the grip, and the backpack that holds everything.

The Karma's biggest competition is likely to be from the Mavic Pro, which just about tops it on paper, although both have slightly different purposes. The Mavic seems to fly longer and faster than GoPro Karma. Camera quality is also pretty even. In terms of price, the full Mavic kit with remote and extras comes at US$1300 (AU$1710) while Karma with Hero5 Black camera and extras comes at US$1099 (AU$1445).