Shares of GoPro Inc. GPRO, -0.38% skidded on Tuesday, at one point tripping a Nasdaq short sale circuit breaker. The selloff was sparked by news that Apple Inc. AAPL, -1.02% was granted a patent for a sports camera, according to Seeking Alpha. GoPro shares fell 8.5% to $51.98 in recent trading with the stock shedding 15% so far this week.
That a patent can cause such reaction in the stock market says a lot about how the system is volatile and fragile to short term effects.
I'm a big fan of both companies and their products, and, assuming this ever gets to be a real product, I'd love to see Apple's take on a sports camera. It's not only the camera, though. GoPro has built all sorts of accessories to work with different sports. And, while it is priced as a consumer device, it's really professional quality stuff. It's used in the most extreme conditions in surfing spots with the largest and heaviest waves, and it delivers. GoPro also has a strong brand among athletes and sportsy types that most geeks probably don't appreciate. Apple for one knows the value such a brand carries.
I believe Apple will have to show a lot more before there's reason to doom GoPro entirely.