GoPro’s new Karma drone looks like a wonderful addition to any professional videographer’s toolkit, but at $1195.95, it’s not for everybody. If you don’t quite have the budget for the Karma, this €49 ($72) foam GoPro accessory is a cheaper way to capture some decent aerial footage.
Looking not unlike a Nerf toy, the AER is used the same way you’d play with a foam football: You just throw it. You first need to stick a GoPro in the nose and then start it recording, but that’s about all the technical setup there is. Capturing a unique aerial perspective is completely dependent on how you send the AER hurdling through the air toward your subject.
Your GoPro HERO 3+, 4 and 5 are protected within a foam enclosure inside the AER’s nose cone, and are recessed so that when it lands there’s no risk of the lens or housing getting scratched up. The AER also floats, in the event the wind carries your expensive action cam into the drink, or for those times you’re intentionally trying to capture some extreme water sports. It even folds down, to a degree, so it’s easier to stash in a backpack.
The creators of the AER have turned to Kickstarter to help put their creation into production. With a donation of around €49 ($72), you can help contribute to their €70,000 ($102,880) funding goal and secure an AER for yourself with a delivery expected sometime in February of next year. A cheaper alternative is to just try strapping your GoPro to an actual Nerf football, but it looks like the AER is specifically designed to minimise the risk and damage to your expensive action cam during less-than-graceful landings.