GoPro has submitted evidence of patent infringements to the commission covering nearly all the consumer products sold by Insta360 in the US. Credit: Insta360

US sports camera firm GoPro has filed a complaint against Chinese camera maker Shenzhen Arashi Vision (Insta360) with the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) under Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, according to information obtained by Chinese media outlet Jiemian. GoPro is claiming patent infringement and asking USITC to investigate the matter and halt the US sale of certain Insta360 cameras, software, and accessories.

Why it matters: GoPro is seeking intervention from USITC to investigate and prevent the sale of the disputed products in the US.

Details: GoPro has submitted evidence of patent infringements to the commission covering nearly all the consumer products sold by Insta360 in the US.

  • The products mentioned by GoPro are Insta360’s ONE X, ONE R, ONE R1-inch, ONR X2, ONE RS, ONE RS 1-inch 360, X3, GO3, Ace, and ACE Pro, according to the Jiemian report.
  • The Section 337 investigation initiated by GoPro, also known as an “unfair import” investigation, is an administrative inquiry conducted by USITC under the provisions of the Tariff Act of 1930 and its amendments. It targets intellectual property infringement and other unfair competitive practices by goods importers.
  • Compared to normal patent litigation in the US, which can last over two years, 337 investigations generally resolve faster. However, they require companies to swiftly gather evidence, hire lawyers, and bear costs that can total millions of dollars.
  • The Jiemian report suggests that GoPro’s market share has declined due to the rise of Insta360, which was founded in 2015. By the end of 2021, Insta360 held a leading market share of 41% in the global market for panoramic cameras, followed by Japan’s Ricoh at 22%, while GoPro ranked third with 19%, according to consulting firm Frost & Sullivan.
  • Established in 2002, GoPro’s latest market value is $331 million, over 97% lower than its peak market value of $13 billion in June 2014, when GoPro listed on the NASDAQ. Insta360’s overseas markets account for nearly 70% of its overall revenue, which were around $280 million in 2022.

Context: In 2023, USITC undertook investigations into 72 Chinese companies, of which 48 chose to respond, the Jiemian report said.

  • California-based GoPro manufactures action cameras and develops its own mobile apps and video-editing software. The company focuses on the connected sports genre, developing action cameras and video editing software for outdoor activities. 
  • Arashi Vision, better known as Insta360, is a camera company headquartered in Shenzhen, with offices in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Berlin. It makes action cameras, 360-degree cameras, editing software for mobile and desktop and 180-3D cameras.

Jessie Wu is a tech reporter based in Shanghai. She covers consumer electronics, semiconductor, and the gaming industry for TechNode. Connect with her via e-mail: jessie.wu@technode.com.


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