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Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera – 2nd result leads us to the product overview page. The general “support” menu is obvious and although you have to enter your product model again it brings up all the latest downloads. Registration is required. Useful link http://www. GoPro Hero 3 – 1st result for updates in our search. As you’d expect from a camera aimed at the masses the process is greatly simplified with an online pictorial step by step guide. From first-hand experience updates on these cameras is frequent and often pushed to you when the device is connected to a PC / MAC. Useful link product-registration/hd-hero3- cameras The list really is in no particular order; there is no scoring system or awards for this. The fact that registration is required we think is actually a plus point. “Best of all if you register on our website and you will receive an automated email every time we upload a new firmware version to our website” says Dave Stannard from Sony. “It definitely pays to keep your camcorder firmware up to date as we are continuously adding new functionality and improving camcorder performance throughout the product’s lifecycle” Sony are of course not alone in offering this and as far as we can tell every manufacturer will push information out to registered users. Simon Westland, Blackmagic Design comments “One of the problems is as a manufacturer we don’t know the names and have contact information for all our individual customers. We sell to a distributor, in turn they sell to a reseller, who then make the sale to the end user. If that end user registers the product online then we capture the details but this is only a small number of users. As such we look to get the information out using various techniques to try and ensure that all users have visibility of updates” So we have two simple pleas…. To manufacturers – sales pages are excellent and almost without fail they appear in the top three Google results – a simple link on this page to the relevant firmware upgrades would be spot on without the user having to go to another page or re-enter product information. The entry of the GoPro Hero 3 in the search list was really to illustrate that it can be made very simple, pleasing to the eye and doesn’t need to look like a scary technical bulletin from which your camera may never recover! Users rely on their kit on a daily basis and from our research just the thought of installing an upgrade can put them off in case it all goes wrong. To users – go to your manufacturer and register your product, if you buy new then do it the day you unpack the device, whether it be a camera, recorder or tripod (although tripods are slightly less likely to have software updates!). If they don’t know who you are then you will most probably have trawl the net looking and as we found out it is sometimes not as easy as it could be. The search results we did prove it is not impossible and sometimes very easy to find upgrades, but if you are registered you won’t even have to look, they’ll come and find you! TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 78 JUNE 2013 | 39 TV-BAY078JUN13.indd 39 10/06/2013 15:15