A Boston-based startup is taking a shot at GoPro Inc. with a case that turns an iPhone into a waterproof, mountable action camera.
Andrew Laird was envious of his sister’s GoPro on a family vacation last year but couldn’t justify the price tag for a gadget he’d only occasionally use. His new iPhone 6 had the same capabilities as a GoPro but was useless around water. So was born the idea for the ProShot case.
“You don’t really need another expensive camera to capture the exact same footage you could capture with your iPhone,” said Laird, chief executive and cofounder of LASO Technologies LLC, maker of ProShot. “So many people are priced out of the [GoPro] market. There was definitely a market out there to take advantage of.”
ProShot raised $90,000 on the Kickstarter crowdfunding site and has sold 3,000 cases from the platform, its own website, and more than 50 surf and ski shops nationwide since launching in May.
The ProShot case works like a clamshell with three clamps to keep the iPhone waterproof and secure. It retails for $99, includes a deep dive lid waterproof down to 100 feet, a touchscreen lid waterproof down to 6 feet, and a wide-angle lens.
In comparison, GoPro’s cameras, the HERO5 Black, HERO5 Session, and the HERO Session retail for $399, $299, and $199 respectively, and are waterproof down to 33 feet.
ProShot is compatible with GoPro’s mounts, and with the free app, users can change camera modes with the iPhone’s volume buttons, from photo to video, slow-mo, and more. Laird and chief financial officer and cofounder Matt Andon are avid skiers and snowboarders and wanted a way to change modes on the slopes without a touchscreen.
Currently the ProShot case is only available for the iPhone 6/6S, but the company is working on the iPhone 7 cases and hopes to launch them by the end of October. It anticipates the iPhone 6 Plus and 7 Plus cases will be ready by Black Friday on Nov. 25.
“We expect that with four of the most popular phone models and the right buzz, we will have the holiday season we have been dreaming about since we started this company,” Andon said.
Correction: An earlier version of this story gave the wrong first name for the CEO of LASO Technologies LLC. He is Andrew Laird.