World’s Worst-Ever Drone Can’t Even Takeoff Anymore, Thanks to GPS Rollover Bug

Jan 6, 2020
Submit

Believe it or not, there are actual GoPro Karma owners out there, and thanks to a GPS clock rollover glitch, all four of them can't fly the drone anymore.

GoPro Karma Drone Falls Prey to GPS Clock Rollover Bug, Owners Plagued with No GPS Signals and Compass Errors - GoPro Working on a Fix

GoPro Karma is not the best drone around and GoPro knows this too, therefore it is not even manufacturing the darn thing anymore. The existing drones which are owned by users around the world are facing a brand new problem, apart from randomly falling out of the sky - the drone can't even takeoff with the start of the new year. Yes, you read that absolutely right. If you turn on your Karma right now, you'll be welcomed with all sorts of GPS and compass related errors, and the drone won't even takeoff. Oddly enough, even with the GPS turned off, the drone refuses to take off due to the GPS rollover bug.

GoPro Hero 9 Black Goes Official with Dual Screens, 20-Megapixel Sensor and 5K Video

GoPro is indeed working on a fix for all this mess. Here's what the official account tweeted out on Twitter:

In case you are wondering what the 'GPS rollover' issue is, here's a quick little rundown from James Vincent over at The Verge:

The rollover issue itself is caused by the fact that GPS systems count weeks using a ten-bit parameter. This means they start counting at week zero and reset when they hit week 1,024. The first count (or “GPS epoch”) started on January 6th, 1980, and the first reset took place on August 21st, 1999. That means the next one is due April 6th this year.

When the rollover happens older devices may reset their date, potentially corrupting navigation data and throwing off location estimates. GPS relies on precise timing data to operate, and each nanosecond the clock is out translates into a foot of location error.

GoPro has had all sorts of troubles to get people onto its drone platform and this new issue is only go to shoo away existing owners. Just imagine for a second, you're out on a holiday, you fire up your drone and it manages to ruin your day instead. Feel like you should have bought a DJI drone instead, right?

Let's see how long it takes for GoPro to roll the fix out to everyone out there.

Submit